President Trump announced Saturday he will delay by two weeks the arrest and deportation of an estimated 2,000 immigrant families in 10 cities pending negotiations with Democratic lawmakers.
“At the request of Democrats, I have delayed the Illegal Immigration Removal Process (Deportation) for two weeks to see if the Democrats and Republicans can get together and work out a solution to the Asylum and Loophole problems at the Southern Border. If not, Deportations start!” the president tweeted just before noon Pacific time.
It’s unclear if San Diego was to be a target in the raids. National media specifically mentioned Houston, Chicago, Miami and Los Angeles as locations of the planned mass arrests.
The now-delayed operation followed President Trump’s tweet on Monday night that “next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens.” It was apparently aimed at families who had gone through all legal proceedings but have not yet been deported.
The operation faced widespread opposition from mayors and law enforcement agencies in the cities targeted.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said he strongly opposed Trump’s “threats of mass deportations on Twitter and television.”
“His actions are irresponsible and unnecessary if in fact the President is truly concerned with removing violent undocumented felons to ensure your public safety,” Villanueva said.
“As your Los Angeles County sheriff, I stand for everyone’s public safety and understand a basic principle of law enforcement practices, which is that we cannot ensure public safety if undocumented residents are afraid to report a crime.”
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