#BREAKING: Courts piss on #Mayor Gimenez Pro-#Trump Rule...

Miami New Times: 

After weeks of fiery protests and a contentious vote of support from the Miami-Dade County Commission, Mayor Carlos Gimenez's move to back Donald Trump's crackdown on sanctuary cities has been tossed out in court as unconstitutional. Miami-Dade Judge Milton Hirsch made the ruling Friday morning.

The challenge was brought by James Lacroix, a Haitian national who was picked up for traffic offenses and faced deportation if the county held him for federal immigration authorities.

"A federal agency wants Lacroix to be a federal prisoner, but demands that the county do the imprisoning on the federal government’s behalf," Hirsch wrote, citing a previous ruling by the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. "That is a demand that the federal government is constitutionally prohibited from enforcing, and it is a demand with which the local government is constitutionally prohibited from complying."

In closing, Hirsch wrote, "We must protect our country from the problems associated with unregulated immigration. We must protect our country from a great many things, but from nothing so much as from the loss of our historic rights and liberties."


However, the county says it will appeal Judge Hirsch's ruling:
But the group of local activists united against Gimenez applauded the judge's ruling.

"The mayor and the Gimenez Nine can ignore the community, but they can't ignore the Constitution and the courts,"  
-Juan Cuba, the chair of the Miami-Dade Democratic Party, tells New Times.

But the labor and pro-immigration activists who mounted a weeks-long campaign against the order immediately celebrated the decision online. Tomas Kennedy, a prominent labor activist in town, quoted Martin Luther King Jr. (who himself paraphrased 19th-century transcendentalist Theodore Parker): "The arc of the moral universe is long," Kennedy wrote, "but it bends toward justice."


But Judge Hirsch laid out a clear case as to why the county cannot hold federal prisoners such as Lacroix:

The present petition for writ of habeas corpus is, on its face, a simple matter to adjudicate. There are no criminal charges pending against Petitioner anywhere in Florida. There is no criminal sentence imposed on Petitioner anywhere in Florida. The Department has no desire to hold Petitioner in its custody, and Petitioner has no desire to be held in the custody of the Department. To the extent that the Department continues to hold Petitioner, it is because the Department has been rendered the cat’s paw of ICE, and ICE wishes Petitioner held. Thus the issue posed by the present motion is easily framed: If ICE’s conscription of the Department’s facilities and manpower is unconstitutional, the writ must issue and Petitioner must go free. If ICE’s conscription of the Department’s facilities and manpower is constitutional, the writ must be denied and Petitioner must remain in the actual custody of the Department – and the constructive custody of ICE – until such time as ICE sees fit to dispose of him. 

Though Hirsch wrote that the legality of ICE detainers themselves were not a matter of debate in this case (that "is a question that could be raised only in federal court," he wrote), the judge ruled it's not a state or local government's job to hold people for the federal government.

"The price would be the subjugation of state and local governments, the reduction of those governments to mere satrapies of a central government of unlimited and illimitable power," Hirsch wrote. "The price would be the abandonment of the fundamental constitutional principle that 'The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.'”

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