Attorney General Jeff Sessions said it's time for the United States to "get its head on straight" and crack down on so-called "sanctuary cities," which refuse to cooperate with the federal government in enforcing U.S. immigration law.
The sanctuary city issue has been thrust back into the spotlight after an illegal immigrant was found not guilty of murder in the July 2015 death of Kate Steinle.
Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, who had been deported multiple times, shot and killed Steinle just months after he was released from a San Francisco jail, despite a federal request that he be held for deportation.
"It is a very frustrating situation right now," Sessions said on "Tucker Carlson Tonight." "The federal government and President Trump [are] crystal clear: We are doing everything possible to get these cities to reverse these policies."
He said that's why the Justice Department is fighting a legal battle to withhold federal grant money from sanctuary cities.
"It's just amazing to me why any city would not want to rid itself of criminals who are also in the country illegally," Sessions said. "Why would they want to maintain them in this country when they're committing additional crimes against the peace and dignity of the city?"
He called on Congress to help the Trump administration enforce immigration law by passing legislation like "Kate's Law," which would enhance penalties for convicted and deported criminals who re-enter the U.S. illegally.
"As soon as possible, I'd like to see this legislation advanced in the Senate," Sessions said.
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