New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio blasted President Donald Trump Sunday over the executive order placing a travel ban on people coming from seven Muslim-majority countries into the United States. He said the new GOP President’s executive action “goes against our Constitutional values” and targets Muslims.
“This sends a horrible message to them that for no reason whatsoever they could be detained or even sent to their home country even though they’re part of the life of the United States,” he told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.”
The progressive mayor also said Trump’s action has left 800,000 permanent residents of the United States in the United States unsure of their futures, adding it’s “still not clear” whether the Trump administration is abiding by the temporary hold placed on the travel ban issued by federal judges Saturday night.
de Blasio’s comments come amid protests at airports in New York and across the country.
The mayor also asserted the ban’s exceptions for religious minorities in Muslim-majority nations make it a de facto Muslim ban, a point Tapper pushed back on, saying it’s possible minority Muslims could be allowed in, as well.
“The indication here is it certainly leans against people come from the Muslim majority in those nations,” de Blasio said.
In the interview, de Blasio was also critical of Trump’s executive action blocking federal grant dollars from going to so-called “sanctuary cities” that do not use their resources to deport undocumented immigrants.
He said New York City had decided that with “half a million” undocumented immigrants in the city, police had decided that fear of deportation would make the city more dangerous by preventing those immigrants from speaking with police and reporting crimes.
“We believe it’s the best way to keep our city safe,” he said. “We’re the safest city in America and we’ve been working with our immigrant communities to make ourself safe.”
He said a “small offense” — including, when pressed by Tapper, driving under the influence, when others are not injured — is “not a reason to tear a family apart.”