Politics & Government

Fresno, Stanislaus sheriffs to attend anti-sanctuary state meeting with Trump

'This is a political stunt': Brown slams Sessions visit to Sacramento

Gov. Jerry Brown compared U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ visit to Sacramento on March 7, 2018, to Fox News.
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Gov. Jerry Brown compared U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ visit to Sacramento on March 7, 2018, to Fox News.

Two leading Central Valley law enforcement officials are heading to Washington D.C. for a meeting on immigration with President Trump Wednesday.

According to a White House official, Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson and Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims are among the 15 local California officials invited to meet with Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen for what has been billed to participants as a "strategy session" for opposing California's sanctuary state policies. Both Mims and Christianson have been publicly critical of California’s immigration policies, which restrict certain types of cooperation with federal immigration officials.

On Wednesday, President Trump will meet with California leaders and public officials who oppose California's illegal and unconstitutional sanctuary policies that release criminal illegal aliens into public communities," the White House official said in a statement to reporters. "They will discuss shared efforts to end the nullification of federal law and restore community safety.”

The mayors of several Southern California cities that are attempting to opt out of the sanctuary policies have also been invited. They include Mayor Troy Edgar of Los Alamitos, the Orange County town that set off the anti-sanctuary movement within the state in March. According to the Los Angeles Times, Edgar sent a letter to Trump and Sessions on May 1, requesting support.

Lassen County District Attorney Stacey Montgomery is also expected to attend, as is congressional candidate Kristin Gaspar, the San Diego County supervisor who is vying to replace Rep. Darrell Issa.

The Trump administration filed a lawsuit in March in an attempt to strike down three California immigration laws — Senate Bill 54, Assembly bill 450 and Assembly bill 103 – that the federal government say violate the supremacy clause of the U.S. Constitution and interfere with the enforcement of federal immigration laws.

S.B. 54 has been a particular flashpoint. It restricts how and when state law enforcement can interact with federal immigration authorities. State leaders assert the law is constitutional. Several cities in Stanislaus and Fresno County have voted to side with the federal government over the state in the lawsuit, or are considering doing so.

California Gov. Jerry Brown has dismissed the Trump administration's lawsuit as a "political stunt."

Franco Ordonez contributed to this report.

Emily Cadei: 202-383-6153, @emilycadei

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