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San Francisco lawmakers vote to uphold ‘sanctuary city’ policy toward immigrants

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Lawmakers in San Francisco voted to uphold the “sanctuary city” policy on Tuesday, almost a year after San Francisco was flung into a national debate about immigration after an undocumented immigrant was charged in the fatal shooting of a woman.

The Board of Supervisors unanimously approved legislation that upholds the city’s policy on limiting law enforcement from providing assistance to federal immigration authorities aiming to apprehend or deport individuals.

The ordinance exempts from protection individuals who are currently being held on suspicion of committing a felony and were either convicted of a violent felony in the past seven years or convicted of a “serious” felony or have three separate convictions of most any felony in the past five years.

The FREE SF Coalition, a collection of immigrant and minority activist and legal aid groups, called the ordinance “an important step forward for San Francisco’s immigrant communities.”

San Francisco is one of dozens of U.S. cities with sanctuary policies, which were rooted in shielding Central and Southern American refugees from deportation in the 1980s.

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The decades-old policy came under fire last year after Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, an undocumented immigrant, was charged with murder in the apparently random shooting of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle as she walked along a popular pier with her father in early July. Sanchez has pleaded not guilty.

Former San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi’s department had released Lopez-Sanchez from jail in April 2015 after a drug charge, despite a request from federal officials that he be held until they could pick him up.

Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump had seized on the shooting to say that it highlighted the country’s problems with illegal immigration. When announcing his plans to seek the Republican nomination for president last June, Trump described immigrants from Mexico to the United States as drug-runners and rapists.

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A second vote on the city’s ordinance is scheduled to be held to affirm the policy next Tuesday. Mayor Ed Lee, who has previously supported the policy, will have 10 days to act on the ordinance if it passes next week.

(Reporting by Curtis Skinner; Editing by Leslie Adler)


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The real problem wasn’t the racism — it was the Trump taking ‘the Lord’s name in vain’ twice: supporter

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President Donald Trump was widely condemned after supporters at a campaign rally in West Virginia turned his racist "go back" message into a "Send Her Back" chant against one of a woman of color in Congress.

One Trump supporter in West Virginia also criticized the speech, but not for the racist targeting of Rep. Ilhan Omar.

State Senator Paul Hardesty, a Democrat, wrote to the White House to complain about Trump's use of the word "goddamn."

The letter was republished by the Montgomery-Herald.

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Tongue-tied GOP strategist crashes and burns on-air while trying to deny Trump’s racism

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Republican strategist Amy Tarkanian crashed and burned on CNN on Saturday while attempting to deny President Donald Trump's racism.

"I do not believe that the president’s tweets were racist. I do believe they were not well thought out. He needs that extra, 'Are you sure?' button on Twitter," Tarkanian argued.

"I'm a black man, I'm a Republican and a black man," the Rev. Joe Watkins interjected. "My mother's an immigrant, I would be angry if someone said that to my mother."

"Oh, it’s very offensive. But he did not say, because you are this color, go back to where you came from," Tarkanian argued. "I’m not supporting that tweet. Was it racist? No. Was it stupid? Yes."

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Trump supporter blames Democrats for being targeted by the president: ‘Why is that racist?’

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CNN interviewed a supporter of President Donald Trump in Eau Claire, Wisconsin who refused to acknowledge the racism in the president's "Go Back" attacks on four women of color in Congress.

The network interviewed Kerri Krumenauer of Wiersgalla Plumbing & Heating Company about Trump's attacks.

"How is it racist?" she asked.

"If you don't like this country, get out," she demanded. "Leave!"

She then showed how misinformed she was about the incident.

"He didn't use any names -- they stood up," she falsely claimed. In fact, Trump did use names and the targets did not stand up as they were not at his North Carolina campaign rally.

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