Fox News is attacking CNN's Chris Cuomo for pointing out that so-called “sanctuary cities” aren't “safe havens” for undocumented immigrants, “the way [critics] are describing.” But as a former acting director of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement pointed out on Cuomo's show this morning, there is no “free pass” for undocumented immigrants in those jurisdictions.
CNN's Cuomo Calls “Sanctuary Cities” A “Misnomer”
Cuomo: “They're Not Safe Havens, The Way You Are Describing.” Cuomo pointed out that the term “sanctuary city” is a “misnomer,” noting that such cities are “not safe havens” in a July 13 interview with Donald Trump aide Michael Cohen:
CUOMO: We know these problems exist. It's - how do we solve them? Him [Trump] saying, I'm going to charge people who come illegally a hundred thousand dollars - do you think that's a real solution?
COHEN: No, but what I'll tell you what he did do: he also opened up the eyes to (sic) many Americans that didn't even know sanctuaries existed.
CUOMO: What sanctuaries?
COHEN: These sanctuaries on the border that allow illegals to stay -- and, if in fact that they end up getting caught, they cannot deport them-
CUOMO: You're talking about sanctuary cities that exist all over the country?
COHEN: Yeah, sanctuary cities -- that's correct-
CUOMO: That's a misnomer. Those are cities that are in disputes with ICE about how you deal with people that they're holding -- that they keep getting sued-
COHEN: They're part of the United States! You can't be in dispute with the federal government-
CUOMO: But they're not safe havens the way you're describing.
COHEN: They most certainly are safe havens.
CUOMO: They are not. It's about how they follow process-
COHEN: They will not turn them over, Chris. They will not turn them over-
CUOMO: They will. There's a legal process. There's a whole reason they got to this. There have been more people deported in the last six years than we'd had in the previous decade. [CNN, New Day, 7/13/15]
Fox News Attacks Cuomo's “Troubling” Reporting
Bill O'Reilly: Cuomo's Comments “Troubling,” He Should “Rethink His Sympathies.” After airing portions of Cuomo's interview, O'Reilly criticized Cuomo and urged him to “rethink his sympathies” on his July 14 program:
O'REILLY: It is troubling that Mr. Cuomo would say that after the man accused of killing Kate Steinle openly said he was in San Francisco, a sanctuary city, because he knew he could come and go at will.
Maybe Mr. Cuomo forgot about that. Let's give him the benefit of the doubt, but he should certainly rethink his sympathies. [Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, 7/14/15]
Fox & Friends: “We All Know” It's “True” That “Sanctuary Cities” Are “Safe Havens.” Fox & Friends' Steve Doocy mocked the interview from the “Cuomo News Network,” stating on the July 15 edition of the program that “Chris Cuomo was essentially saying that sanctuary cities, that is a misnomer, they are not really safe havens, which of course, we all know is true.” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 7/15/15]
Cuomo Interviews Former Top ICE Official, Who Debunks “Sanctuary City” Rhetoric
Former ICE Acting Director: “Not A Free Pass” In Those Jurisdictions. In a July 15 interview with Cuomo, former ICE acting director John Torres explained the term “sanctuary city,” pointing out that there is no “free pass” for undocumented immigrants in those jurisdictions:
CUOMO: The critics really came up with the moniker of “sanctuary city.” Do you think that is a fair definition? Meaning that any undocumented or illegal immigrant in a sanctuary city doesn't have to fear any type of detection, any type of law action against them?
TORRES: Well, from the aspect of perception, if the perception is you have no fear, then we've heard this a million times, then the perception becomes the reality.
CUOMO: But in your practice of what they do in these jurisdictions, is it a free pass?
TORRES: No, it is not a free pass. There are a number of people that get transferred over to ICE from different jurisdictions. But unfortunately some of those instances too where I've worked with police chiefs and sheriffs, they've said “hey look,” I've got to work with you. We've got to set this agreement. We don't want any publicity. We don't want it to be really known that we're cooperating with you and we have to figure out some sort of work-around agreement. [CNN, New Day, 7/15/15]