Attorney General Jeff Sessions defended his lawsuit against the state of California on Wednesday evening, telling Fox News that “somebody needs to stand up and say no” to the “radical” state for its sanctuary city laws and its officials’ efforts to thwart raids by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
That “somebody” is apparently Sessions, one of the most consistent targets of the President’s Twitter bullying.
“Somebody needs to stand up and say no, you’ve gone too far,” he said in an interview broadcast Wednesday. “You cannot do this, this is not reasonable. It is radical, really. It is an affirmation, if you want to know the truth, of the idea that we should not have immigration laws, that we should have an open border…It is an extreme position that has been taken by some here, a lot of the government agencies here, and we just have to push back.”
The Trump administration filed a lawsuit against the state of California on Tuesday, suing to block the state’s laws that give protections to undocumented people in California. The Justice Department claims the state’s landmark legislation is unconstitutional because it blocks officers from enforcing federal immigration laws.
The lawsuit follows reports that the mayor of Oakland warned her residents about an upcoming raid from ICE last week. California state and local officials have remained defiant of the suit and defensive of their sanctuary city laws.
In the interview with Fox News, Sessions claimed the state’s laws were harming ICE officers and the “honorable work they do.”
“Most states and jurisdictions around the country help happily, but we cannot allow them to obstruct and block the ability of federal officers to do the job they are lawfully required to do,” he said.
“The governor, by signing the (sanctuary cities) bill, has placed us in the position where we cannot accept this and we have got to challenge it, and I made clear today why we were challenging it, why it is important, and why we’ve got to stop it,” he said referencing comments he made while in Sacramento Wednesday when he called California elected officials “radical extremists.”
In the wake of the lawsuit, President Trump is scheduled to make his first visit to California as President next week.