We'll know today if Escondido will become the first San Diego County city to support the Trump administration's lawsuit against California's sanctuary laws.
The Escondido City Council is set to decide this afternoon whether to file a legal brief in support of the lawsuit, which challenges the legality of three state laws enacted last year. Among them is a statute that limits cooperation between local law enforcement and federal immigration authorities, which U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions says is unconstitutional and compromises public safety.
The matter was put on the council agenda by Mayor Sam Abed and Councilman John Masson. If approved, the city will file an amicus brief in the suit, which allows a party to issue an opinion on a court case without being directly involved in the lawsuit. Escondido would become the first local government in San Diego County to sound off on the case.
Orange County has led the way in opposition against the sanctuary policies, though tactics have varied between governments. The Mission Viejo City Council voted to file an amicus brief last month, and the Orange County Board of Supervisors voted to join the administration's lawsuit. The Huntington Beach council on Monday voted to become a part of the courtroom fight against the laws and the council in Los Alamitos recently voted to "exempt" itself from the policies.
The San Diego Board of Supervisors on April 17 plan to discuss the case. Supervisor Dianne Jacob said she expects the board to vote at least 3-2 to join the lawsuit. Activists will hold a news conference outside Escondido City hall ahead of the council vote to express opposition to the lawsuit.
Photo Credit: Sara Bartlett