MIAMI (CN) – U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions blasted Chicago for its “sanctuary” policies during a speech in Florida on Wednesday, while praising Miami-Dade County for its commitment to the rule of law and helping the federal government enforce immigration laws.
In his speech in Miami, Sessions accused Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and other Windy City politicians of protecting criminal aliens over law-abiding U.S. citizens.
“For the sake of their city, Chicago’s leaders need to recommit to policies that punish criminals instead of protecting them,” he said.
During the 30-minute speech at the Port of Miami, the attorney general urged “sanctuary cities” such as Chicago to comply with law enforcement and federal immigration authorities, and to follow the example of Miami-Dade County and its Mayor Carlos Gimenez.
“Miami-Dade is an example of what is possible through hard work, professional policing, and a rededication to the rule of law,” he said.
Sessions referred to Miami-Dade County as one of the safest jurisdictions in the country.
He said that during Independence Day weekend, the county had a historic low number of shootings – zero – while Chicago had more than 100 shootings and 15 homicides.
The attorney general criticized Chicago and its murder rate by mentioning that even though it has about the same population as Miami-Dade County, roughly 2.7 million people, it has had more than 430 people murdered since the beginning of the year – three times more than Miami-Dade.
”Every year, too many Americans lives are victimized as a result of sanctuary city policies, whether it be theft, robbery, drugs, assault, battery, and even murder,” Sessions said.
He claimed that sanctuary jurisdictions provide “safe harbor for some of the most dangerous criminals in our country.”
Sessions has closely followed President Donald Trump’s agenda to reduce crime and illegal immigration, and give federal funds to those cities that cooperate with federal immigration officials.
In his remarks, the attorney general highlighted that the federal government would not continue giving taxpayer money to sanctuary cities that undermine the safety of its citizens and frustrate efforts to reduce crime by illegal aliens.
“During the last administration, the inspector general sent 10 letters to jurisdictions that they had reason to believe were not complying with federal immigration law,” he said. “Last week, we sent a letter to your mayor and today I’m here to announce that Miami-Dade is now in full compliance and eligible for federal law enforcement grant dollars.”
Earlier this month, the Department of Justice determined that Miami-Dade County was in compliance with immigration laws.
“To all sanctuary jurisdictions across the country, I say this: Miami-Dade is doing it, and so can you,” Sessions concluded. “Work with us to enforce a lawful immigration system that keeps us safe and serves our national interest.”