"For far too many years, politicians in Washington have done nothing to address the problem of illegal immigration. This week that changed," U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, R-Pa., who represents state-government workers and pensioners around Harrisburg and depressed former hard-coal towns around Hazleton, wrote in an open letter this morning.
"On Wednesday, President Donald J. Trump signed two executive orders aimed at stopping illegal immigration. The first orders the construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. The second strips federal grant funding from sanctuary cities that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration officials or obey immigration laws."
Philadelphia Mayor James Kenney has said he has no plans to change the city's "sanctuary" designation.
Trump's orders "come as welcome news for those of us who have long fought against illegal immigration," Barletta added. "I have led the fight to secure our borders and enforce our immigration laws. I took that fight to Congress, where the first bill I introduced cracked down on sanctuary cities.
"That bill, the Mobilizing Against Sanctuary Cities Act, goes a step further than President Trump's executive order by removing all federal funding, not just certain federal grant funding, from sanctuary cities that harbor illegal immigrants and refuse to obey the law...
"Twice before, Washington lacked the political will to pass it. However, with President Trump proving this week that stopping illegal immigration is a top priority of his administration, I am hopeful that we will finally enforce our laws and protect the American people."