SANTA FE – On the day Bernalillo County and other jurisdictions around the country were being ordered to provide the federal government with records on immigrant-friendly policies, Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales went back on Fox News to defend his city’s own “sanctuary” stance.
During an interview on “The Story with Martha MacCallum,” Gonzales was asked why it was OK to put the needs and wants of immigrants ahead of American citizens. “Our first mandate is to keep our communities safe and to follow the laws,” he said.
“The president doesn’t know the people that I know in our community that are hard-working people; they are immigrants who have come to this country seeking a better life. They participate in our communities, they participate in our economy and our schools.”
Early last year, Gonzales also made the rounds at Fox and other national news outlets and became a prominent spokesman for sanctuary policies.
He also went on Twitter recently after a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official suggested arresting political leaders in sanctuary jurisdictions. “The Trump administration can find me at the Santa Fe Mayor’s office from 8-6, Monday-Friday,” Gonzales tweeted. “I will stand up for all New Mexicans keeping their families together.”
Still, Santa Fe wasn’t targeted by the U.S. Department of Justice’s order for records that other local governments around the country received Wednesday. In response to that order, mayors gathered in Washington who had been scheduled to meet with Trump on infrastructure issues cancelled the meeting.
Asked about that on Fox, Gonzales said it was “disingenuous” for the president to call the meeting and then come out with “this threat from the Department of Justice that really has no merit to it.” He said he didn’t want to participate in the meeting “nor do I think we should until the administration is honest about working with local governments.”
He also said, “What we need to do is work along side federal officials to make sure we target people who want to commit violent crimes in our country. That’s where we need to partner with the federal government. That’s where the federal government needs to partner with local law enforcement communities.”