As President-elect Donald Trump gears up to take office in just a few weeks, a coalition of nearly three dozen leaders of so-called “sanctuary cities” have gathered together to implore President Barack Obama to pen an executive order that would shield illegal immigrants from deportation.
The initiative – which is supported by New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, and 27 other mayors – was spurred by the Cities for Action coalition, which unities municipal leaders across the country under a pro-immigration banner.
The group penned an open letter to Obama encouraging him to extend executive protections for illegal immigrants, placing particular emphasis on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that offers a path to citizenship for those who entered the country illegally as minors.
“DACA has tremendously benefited our communities by helping our residents thrive and contribute in myriad ways,” the letter reads in part. “We call upon your administration to accept early renewal applications for current DACA holders to extend temporary protections for them.”
The letter goes on to demand that Obama hide the identities of those currently enrolled in the DACA program, presumably to prevent the president-elect from using the database to expedite his deportation strategy.
Also targeted by Cities for Action was the Temporary Protected Status designation, which allows certain immigrants to stay in the U.S. if their countries of origin are deemed unsafe for return, citing Haiti and Ecuador as recent examples.