Judge blocks part of Trump's sanctuary cities executive order

After a federal judge on Tuesday blocked Trump's move to withhold funding from cities that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement, Curtatone took to Twitter to share the latest "score" in the conflict. "But we are confident we will ultimately prevail in the Supreme Court, just as we will prevail in our lawful efforts to impose immigration restrictions necessary to keep terrorists out of the United States".

Trump wrote in a series of three tweets: "First the 9th Circuit rules against the [travel] ban & now it hits again on sanctuary cities-both ridiculous rulings". That was the court that blocked the president's first travel ban, against seven Muslim countries.

"San Francisco, and cities like it, are putting the well-being of criminal aliens before the safety of our citizens, and those city officials who authorised these policies have the blood of dead Americans on their hands".

Orrick also ruled that Trump's January 25 order to deny federal funds to sanctuary cities violated the Constitution.

In a series of tweets, Trump vowed that the White House was ready to bring the case to the Supreme Court and blasted the USA 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which was part of legal decisions blocking Trump's travel restrictions on several Muslim-majority countries.

If Trump is right about the ultimate destination of the sanctuary cities case, he'll face a court reinforced by his own nominee, conservative Justice Neil Gorsuch.

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These are cities - among them New York, Los Angeles, Houston, Chicago and San Francisco - that have limited their cooperation with federal immigration authorities.

Despite Trump's pointing to the 9th Circuit, Judge Orrick actually sits on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, from which cases are appealed to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Trump's tweets echo a White House statement released Tuesday night after Orrick's ruling.

"The Constitution vests the spending powers in Congress, not the President, so the Order can not constitutionally place new conditions on federal funds", wrote Orrick, who was nominated to the court by Barack Obama.

Even if the president could do so, those conditions would have to be clearly related to the funds at issue and not coercive, as the executive order appeared to be, Orrick said. "The president has called it "a weapon" to use against jurisdictions that disagree with his preferred policies of immigration enforcement".

In the last Supreme Court term, the 9th Circuit came in second on that score. If Justice Department lawyers lose the case before the left-leaning appeals court, they can ask the Supreme Court to weigh in.

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