Illegals are beginning to have more rights than citizens.
About half of all Americans now live under sanctuary policies that shield illegal immigrants from law enforcement, according to the latest tally of jurisdictions that the Federation for American Immigration Reform is releasing Thursday.
FAIR calculates there were 564 states and municipalities that refuse some level of cooperation with federal immigration authorities as of April 1, up more than 200 since President Trump took office and up more than 500 compared with a decade ago. There were just 40 sanctuaries when President Obama took office.
Entire states such as California, Illinois and New York are now sanctuaries, as well as major cities and counties such as Fairfax, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties and the District of Columbia in the capital region, according to the list.
Combined, the sanctuaries on FAIR’s list cover 49 percent of the country’s population, The Washington Times calculated.
“This is just an astounding and a dramatic surge of sanctuary jurisdictions,” said Bob Dane, executive director at FAIR. “They’ve doubled in just two years, and if you game that out, if the exponential growth continues, it’s not going to be long before it’s accurate to say the U.S. is a sanctuary country.”
While there is no official definition of sanctuaries, FAIR counted any jurisdiction that bans police or other officials from asking about immigration status, forbids communication with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or refuses to hold likely deportees for pickup by ICE.
The organization scoured local government policies, looked at press reports and used ICE’s own set of reports last year listing jurisdictions that refused to honor “detainer” requests to hold illegal immigrants.
FAIR’s numbers are higher than other counts, such as the Ohio Jobs and Justice Political Action Committee, which has been tracking sanctuaries for years, or the ICE detainer list, which was started then quickly discontinued last year.
The surge in sanctuaries began under Mr. Obama, with an average of three sanctuaries per month added during his two terms, according to FAIR statistics. Mr. Trump, meanwhile, is seeing an average of 16 new sanctuaries each month.
California looms large on the list. More than 130 of the sanctuaries are in the state — including more than 80 that are new additions to the list, reflecting the anti-Trump sentiment of the West Coast.
Some jurisdictions embrace the sanctuary label, such as the District of Columbia. Mayor Muriel Bowser says the city is proud of the work it does to shield illegal immigrants.