Tim Kaine dismisses "phantom" sanctuary city claims

Somebody at the Clinton campaign headquarters needs to pull their vice presidential candidate aside and get him on the same page with the rest of the team. On CNN yesterday, Tim Kaine showed up for an interview in which he decided to weigh in on the subject of sanctuary cities. His take on the controversial issue? They don’t really exist. (Mediaite)

“I trust the voters of communities to hold their mayors and their police departments responsible,” Kaine said. “When Donald Trump kind of goes after these phantom ‘sanctuary cities’ and talks about how bad they are, basically what he’s going after is police chiefs. And I trust police chiefs in terms of knowing what should be done to keep their communities safer and police departments and mayors a lot more than I trust Donald Trump.”

[Chris] Cuomo took issue with Kaine’s insistence that the idea of sanctuary cities was only “phantom.” “But why do you say ‘phantom’? You know that there are places that refuse to cooperate with [Immigrant Customs Enforcement] and they have their assembly of different reasons for why they do it, but sanctuary cities are real,” he said.

A staggering claim such as this isn’t done justice without going to the video.


First of all, as Mediaite correctly points out, Kaine is taking a position completely opposite to that of his running mate. Hillary Clinton is on record as saying that sanctuary cities are not only real, but “helpful” to public safety. Amazingly, her campaign took this position following the most high profile murder of an American citizen by an illegal immigrant in recent memory.

“Hillary Clinton believes that sanctuary cities can help further public safety, and she has defended those policies going back years,” said Xochitl Hinojosa, a campaign spokeswoman, in a statement made public Thursday. “As she made clear, this particular individual should not have been on the streets…She believes that we need a system where people like this don’t fall through the cracks and that is why she continues to fight for comprehensive immigration reform.”

Further, the cities themselves aren’t making any bones about it. The incident Clinton’s team was referring to took place in San Francisco. This past May they held a vote to renew and formalize their policies and city Supervisor John Avalos actually invoked the phrase in the announcement. Another example is Philadelphia, the very same city which just hosted both Clinton and Kaine for their nomination convention. As soon as Mayor Jim Kenney took office this year he immediately signed six executive orders restoring their official status as a sanctuary city. If Tim Kaine is really having trouble finding them, the Center for Immigration Studies provides a helpful, interactive map of all of them and the numbers are disturbingly high.

But Kaine thinks that sanctuary cities are a “phantom” concept? This needs to be brought up at the debates because someone on the Democrats’ team clearly missed a memo.