Millions of Americans were furious on Thursday when Jose Ines Garcia Zarate was found not guilty of murdering Kate Steinle in the sanctuary city of San Francisco even though he confessed to the crime. Now, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is speaking out to say that it’s time for the U.S. to “get its head on straight” and crack down on so-called “sanctuary cities,” which refuse to cooperate with the federal government in enforcing U.S. immigration law
“It is a very frustrating situation right now,” Sessions told Fox News host Tucker Carlson. “The federal government and President Trump [are] crystal clear: We are doing everything possible to get these cities to reverse these policies.”
He explained that that’s why the Justice Department is fighting a legal battle to withhold federal grant money from sanctuary cities.
“It’s just amazing to me why any city would not want to rid itself of criminals who are also in the country illegally,” Sessions said. “Why would they want to maintain them in this country when they’re committing additional crimes against the peace and dignity of the city?”
Sessions also called on Congress to help the Trump administration enforce immigration law by passing legislation like “Kate’s Law,” which would enhance penalties for convicted and deported criminals who re-enter the U.S.
“As soon as possible, I’d like to see this legislation advanced in the Senate,” Sessions said.
This came after President Donald Trump took to Twitter to lament the verdict in the Steinle case.
“The Kate Steinle killer came back and back over the weakly protected Obama border, always committing crimes and being violent, and yet this info was not used in court. His exoneration is a complete travesty of justice. BUILD THE WALL!” he wrote.
The Kate Steinle killer came back and back over the weakly protected Obama border, always committing crimes and being violent, and yet this info was not used in court. His exoneration is a complete travesty of justice. BUILD THE WALL!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 1, 2017
Attorney General Jeff Sessions had previously expressed his frustrations with the verdict.
“When jurisdictions choose to return criminal aliens to the streets rather than turning them over to federal immigration authorities, they put the public’s safety at risk. San Francisco’s decision to protect criminal aliens led to the preventable and heartbreaking death of Kate Steinle,” he said. “While the State of California sought a murder charge for the man who caused Ms. Steinle’s death—a man who would not have been on the streets of San Francisco if the city simply honored an ICE detainer—the people ultimately convicted him of felon in possession of a firearm.”
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