Skip to content

Mapping Trump's Coming War on Immigrant Sanctuary Cities

The president-elect's promise to deport millions of undocumented immigrants has set up a showdown with the cities that have pledged to protect them.
relates to Mapping Trump's Coming War on Immigrant Sanctuary Cities
Ross D. Franklin/AP

Donald Trump has promised a war on America’s “sanctuary cities,” threatening to cut off all federal dollars to communities "that refuse to cooperate” with federal authorities in immigration enforcement. As my colleague Natalie Delgadillo reported, several big-city mayors have already declared they will continue to resist using local law enforcement to enforce federal immigration law.

Given the overwhelming strength of the GOP at federal and state levels of government, these sanctuary jurisdictions may become the major battleground in the political struggle over the president-elect’s mass deportation plan. Currently, many sanctuary communities bypass involvement in Immigration and Customs Enforcement deportation efforts by choosing to release undocumented immigrants from police custody, rather than detaining them beyond their release date without warrant for transfer to immigration authorities. The continuation or expansion of such local practices could seriously hinder Trump’s plans to deport all undocumented immigrants with criminal records.

To understand where the Trump administration may target localities for refusing to cooperate with ICE, CityLab mapped all counties that ICE classifies as having policies or legislation that “limits or prohibits cooperation with ICE,” based on data released to The Texas Tribune in January. In addition to this sanctuary county data, colored in blue, we underlaid 2014 state-level estimates of undocumented immigrant populations from Pew, so viewers can pinpoint potential disparities between where undocumented immigrants live and where policies exist that, to drastically varying degrees, forego some measure of cooperation with ICE.

CARTO: Sanctuary Map (English Version)