By Jeff Horseman | jhorseman@scng.com | The Press-Enterprise
April 5, 2018 at 12:05 pm

There appears to be little to no sentiment among Riverside or San Bernardino County supervisors to follow Orange County’s lead in joining a federal lawsuit against California over state laws intended to shield undocumented immigrants from deportation.

Riverside County Supervisor Chuck Washington, who chairs his county’s Board of Supervisors, said Monday, April 2, that he’s not planning to put the matter on the board’s agenda “and none of my colleagues have asked me to do so.”

Washington, a Democrat, said that Riverside County Sheriff Stan Sniff, a Republican, has told him he’s able to run his department without violating federal law, and “that is adequate, to my way of thinking.”

San Bernardino County supervisors did not respond to requests for comment.

San Bernardino County spokesman David Wert said that supervisors “(haven’t) taken any positions on this matter. It didn’t come up during (Tuesday)’s board meeting, and the board isn’t scheduled to get together again until April 17. There currently aren’t any plans to discuss it then, either.”

Signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown last October, SB 54, also known as the California Values Act or the “sanctuary state” law, puts new limits on state and local law enforcement’s ability to help the federal government enforce immigration law. Specifically, the state law prohibits police in California from helping immigration officers detain immigrants accused of most non-violent crimes, though police remain cooperative with federal authorities when it comes to holding people accused of violent crimes, multiple drug and alcohol offenses and hundreds of other exceptions.

The law is part of a larger effort by California’s elected Democratic leadership to defy President Donald Trump’s policies, especially his crackdown on illegal immigration. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions flew to Sacramento last month to announce federal litigation against SB 54 and two other laws on the grounds they violate the U.S. Constitution.
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To the cheers of those opposed to illegal immigration, Orange County supervisors voted unanimously March 27 to join the federal lawsuit. The Los Alamitos City Council voted to exempt that city from SB 54, the city of Yorba Linda filed a friend-of-the-court brief on the lawsuit’s behalf and Huntington Beach plans to sue California over SB 54.
“Have their hands full”

The Inland Empire political landscape is more purple than red. While the region is home to some of California’s most conservative politicians, Riverside and San Bernardino counties have pluralities of Democratic voters and both counties went to Democrats Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in the last two presidential elections.

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