Southland and California elected officials and activists wasted no time over the last 48 hours lashing out at President Donald Trump’s executive actions calling for construction of a wall along the Mexican border and slashing funding for so-called “sanctuary” cities that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
“These are serious times that call for serious solutions,” said Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Los Angeles. “Yes, border security is a crucial pillar of comprehensive immigration reform, but a huge wall won’t make us any safer, morally upright, reduce the deficit or energize our economy.
“We need reform that provides real border security, unites families, protects American workers and offers an earned pathway to citizenship—something that Democrats and I will continue to champion in the face of the crazy conservatism of Trump world,” he said.
Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., said Trump’s orders will “harm public safety, tear families apart and jeopardize national security.”
“Forcing taxpayers to foot the bill for a wall isn’t a solution, it’s a political gesture,” Harris said. “`And telling cities they must deny public safety, education and health care services to children and families living within their jurisdiction will not make us more secure; it will mean fewer crimes reported and more families living in fear.
“In its first few days, this new administration has consistently acted against the interests of those who are voiceless and vulnerable,” she said.
Rusty Hicks, executive secretary treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, said the organization would continue to stand in support of the roughly 1 million immigrants living in Los Angeles County illegally.
“We have already strengthened protections for immigrant workers in collective bargaining agreements,” Hicks said. “Now, with our state legislators and county Board of Supervisors, we will grow the 100 attorneys we have already organized into a much larger force to make sure every immigrant has a lawyer to defend their rights to a fair process.”
“For decades, Los Angeles and California have been stronger, more progressive and more prosperous than the rest of the nation,” he said.
“Unfortunately, President Trump has chosen to take our nation down the dark path of division and exclusion, building a border wall was a hallmark of Trump’s presidential campaign, and he continues to insist that although the United States will be moving ahead with construction, Mexico will ultimately foot the bill—something Mexican leaders have steadfastly denied.”
“I’m just telling you there will be a payment,” Trump said in an interview with ABC News. “It will be in a form —perhaps a complicated form. And you have to understand what I’m doing is good for the United States. It’s also going to be good for Mexico. We want to have a very stable, very solid Mexico.”