The Trump administration has signed agreements with Arizona, Louisiana, Indiana, and one lone sheriff’s office in North Carolina that state any future immigration changes made by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) first have to be run by the localities before the federal government can act, BuzzFeed News reports. If that sounds like a bunch of bull to you, you’re not wrong.
Santa Clara University School of Law professor Pratheepan Gulasekaram told BuzzFeed News that the policy “is just another last-ditch effort to try and ingrain a reckless hyper enforcement system, but completely unmoored from legal, constitutional ways of implementing policy.” But aside from even that, the paperwork was signed by anti-immigrant goofball Ken Cuccinelli, found to be unlawfully serving as deputy at the department.
BuzzFeed News reports that the so-called Sanctuary for Americans First Enactment Agreement (SAFE) documents signed by unlawfully appointed Ken say a future DHS has to provide localities with six months notice before making policy change. “If either of the parties does not ‘comply’ with the obligations, they will be entitled to ‘injunctive relief,’ according to the agreement,” the report said. “Either party can ‘request in writing’ to terminate the agreement, but must provide 180 days of notice.”
So what’s the point if the federal government can end this agreement anyway? Well, the point is that it could help delay executive orders by President-elect Joe Biden for months, changes that he’s pledged to begin implementing on Day One of his new administration, like protecting Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients and the 100-day deportation moratorium beginning Wednesday.
That’s what unlawfully appointed Ken hopes will happen, but policy experts ridiculed the agreement on social media. They basically said there’s a very good chance it’s worth about as much as Ken’s job title and that the new administration should just ignore it.
Immigration attorney Charles Kuck tweeted the agreements are “void because the Cuch is also not legally serving. Giving state’s power to dictate federal immigration policy is also unsupported in the law. Good riddance to this clown show.” No disagreements there. “Under no circumstances is this legal,” tweeted American Immigration Council counsel Aaron Reichlin-Melnick. “The Biden administration should simply ignore any such policy, which was almost certainly signed by an unlawfully appointed DHS Secretary, when moving forward.”
California Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard, chair of the influential House Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, called it “a pathetic, vindictive last gasp of a failed presidency.” Truly, a pathetic, vindictive last gasp of a failed presidency that’s determined to keep haunting us.
“This is a transparent attempt by Trump officials to tie the Biden-Harris administration’s hands and preserve Trump’s grotesque immigration enforcement policy, which included a massive expansion of collaboration programs between state and local governments and ICE, like 287(g), at a profound cost to taxpayers and public safety,” the American Civil Liberties Union said in a statement received by Daily Kos. “The Biden administration has the authority, mandate, and responsibility to break from the Trump administration’s legacy, and nothing about these reported agreements changes that reality.”
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