Donald Trump says he will consider blocking funding to the state of California, if they go forward with their plan to become a “Sanctuary State.”
Trump made the comments in an interview with Bill O’Reilly on Fox News.
Many cities in the United States – including Los Angeles and San Francisco in California – are considered “sanctuary cities,” and refuse to provide immigration status info to federal authorities.
For example, someone who is an illegal immigrant may sign up for city services, and in doing so declare their illegal status. In that case, the city will not tell the federal government about it. Sanctuary cities also sometimes refuse to share info in criminal investigations.
Becoming a “Sanctuary State” would mean all of California would function as a sanctuary city.
Trump’s leverage over California is limited
While Trump may have the ability de-fund California, this is a threat with limited power, since California sends more money to the federal government than they receive back.
This means California could counter Trump’s threat by refusing to remit funds to the federal government.
Trump also has limited political leverage in the state, as Democrats control all branches of government, and win by large margins.
The looming battle between California and the Trump Administration will likely end up in the courts, and will test the balance of power between the states and the federal government.
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