The Justice Department urged the Supreme Court Monday to trim back a nationwide ruling that blocks the government from punishing sanctuary cities — those that decline to help the federal government enforce immigration laws.
A judge in Chicago was wrong, the Justice Department said, to stop the government from enforcing its policy of denying law enforcement grants to sanctuary cities nationwide. Instead the judge’s order should have been limited to granting relief only to Chicago, which filed a lawsuit challenging the policy.
Though once relatively rare, nationwide injunctions in a variety of cases have become more frequent in recent years. Three years ago, for example, a judge in Texas blocked President Barack Obama from allowing adults who came to the U.S. illegally to stay if they have U.S. citizen children.
For more than a year, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been turning up the heat on sanctuary cities, telling them they would lose federal crime-fighting grants if their police refused to give immigration authorities advance notice before releasing illegal immigrants from custody or declined to allow immigration agents to visit local jails.