A federal appeals court on Wednesday ruled that the Trump administration can deny Department of Justice grant money to states that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
The 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in New York overturned a lower court ruling that stopped the administration’s 2017 move to withhold grant money from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne JAG) Program, which dispenses over $250 million a year to state and local criminal justice efforts, Fox News reports.
“Today’s decision rightfully recognizes the lawful authority of the Attorney General to ensure that Department of Justice grant recipients are not at the same time thwarting federal law enforcement priorities,” a DOJ spokesman said in a statement. “The grant conditions here require states and cities that receive DOJ grants to share information about criminals in custody. The federal government uses this information to enforce national immigration laws--policies supported by successive Democrat and Republican administrations.”
The latest decision conflicts with rulings from other appeals courts across the country concerning sanctuary policies, indicating a Supreme Court review is ultimately likely.