National News

Portland joins Seattle's lawsuit challenging Trump's executive order on sanctuary cities

Posted June 30, 2017 4:07 p.m. EDT

— The city of Portland has joined the city of Seattle's lawsuit challenging President Donald Trump's executive order regarding sanctuary cities.

The order threatens to strip federal funding from cities that refuse to assist the federal government in immigration enforcement.

The action was signed by Trump in January and budget estimates showed Portland could stand to lose around $50 million in federal and state grants due to its sanctuary city designation.

The Portland City Council voted unanimously in April to allow the city attorney to challenge the executive order.

Mayor Ted Wheeler's office announced Friday that Portland has joined Seattle's lawsuit.

In the amended complaint filed this week in the Western District of Washington, the cities seek a declaration that they are acting consistently with federal law and that the U.S. Constitution precludes application of the executive order to deny them federal funds to which they are otherwise entitled.

"It's not merely that our cities' values are under attack, it's that these attacks are against the law," Wheeler said. "Together, we are standing up for our values and the Constitution."

Oregon became a sanctuary state in 1987.

Multnomah County, Portland, Hillsboro, Beaverton and Corvallis are among the local government bodies that previously made sanctuary designations, stating people in those areas would be treated equally regardless of their immigration status.

A resolution to declare Forest Grove a sanctuary city failed.