SALEM, OR (KPTV) - Gov. Kate Brown and Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum filed a lawsuit against President Donald Trump and acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker over withheld grant funding due to Oregon’s sanctuary laws.
The lawsuit alleges the federal government should not be permitted to force the state of Oregon to cooperate with federal immigration policies.
Brown and Rosenblum state the U.S. Department of Justice has withheld federal grants called Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants from Oregon.
The Oregon officials said Congress did not tie the grants to immigration enforcement, but the U.S. DOJ has failed to provide the money to Oregon, citing the state’s sanctuary laws.
Last year, Oregon received more than $2 million in grant money, which was used for state and county drug courts.
The lawsuit alleges that two federal statutes that prevent the state from imposing some limits on employee communications with federal immigration authorities usurp state power and violate the U.S. Constitution. It also alleges that U.S. DOJ's decision to impose conditions that Congress did not approve intrudes on Congressional power.
On Tuesday, Oregon voters rejected a measure that would have repealed the state’s immigrant sanctuary law.
The city of Portland was invited to join the lawsuit, and Mayor Ted Wheeler announced his intention to ask the City Council to authorize the city to join it.
Last year, the city of Portland joined a lawsuit by the city of Seattle that challenged Trump’s executive order on sanctuary cities.
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