Trump’s ‘sanctuary city’ tweets draws reaction in Seattle (Reports).
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and Burien Mayor Jimmy Matta are responding to the president’s tweet about sending immigrants to so-called ‘sanctuary cities.’
Early Friday, President Donald Trump confirmed the administration considered sending immigrants caught at the border to those cities to punish Democrats who oppose his immigration polices.
Durkan called that plan ‘inhumane’ in a short statement:
Time and again, we have seen this administration weaken the moral standing of America and undermine true public safety. It is time for Congress to act to stop the President’s repeated attempts to punish perceived enemies and stop his cruel, divisive, and unlawful attacks on our immigrant and refugee communities. This threat is yet another inhumane proposal from a White House that continues to separate children from parents and hold them in deplorable conditions. It is against our values to use people – including children and families in crisis – as political pawns. Seattle will continue to fight for the dignity of every person and will not allow any administration to use the power of America to destroy the promise of America.
Late Friday, the Washington Post published an op-ed by Durkan. She writes that immigrants don’t scare Seattle, “What does scare us? A president and federal government that would seek to weaponize a law enforcement agency to punish perceived political enemies. A would-be despot who thinks the rule of law does not apply to him.”
Burien Mayor Jimmy Matta also weighed in, “Nobody likes bullies. The tactic he’s using with the tweet today is a bully tactic.”
Matta — whose parents are from Guatemala — says his city is determined to protect immigrants.
“We’re a city that when we decided to be a sanctuary city, was because we wanted to make sure that if someone is undocumented, or was going through domestic violence, would not be fearful of calling the police department,” said Matta.
Matta believes the president’s tweet does more harm than good.
“The president is taking it as a joke. To me it just breaks my heart that the president is looking at a national issue or global issue and mocking the Spanish or the immigrant community,” said Matta.
He went onto say, “This is a political ploy. It’s to create more division between the republicans and the democrats.”
“President Trump has little regard for what is lawful and is more interested in promoting his anti-immigrant agenda,” said Matt Adams, an attorney with Northwest Immigrant Rights Project.
Critics say the plan is disrespectful and an effort to use migrants as pawns to go after political opponents.
“It’s purely vindictive. It shows a man who’s supposed to be the President of the United States, but instead of looking out for the welfare of the US he’s concerned with advancing his political agenda with punishing those who oppose him,” said Adams.
White House and Homeland Security officials had said as recently as Friday morning that the ‘sanctuary cities’ idea has been discussed, but quickly dismissed, after DHS lawyers voiced opposition.
Trump’s tweets took DHS officials by surprise.