SAN ANTONIO – A federal judge on Monday heard arguments before he decides whether a new Texas “sanctuary cities” crackdown backed by the Trump administration can take effect.
U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia appeared interested in how the law signed by Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and scheduled to take effect in September would be enforced. The measure lets police ask people about immigration status during routine stops.
Garcia asked whether an officer could ask all passengers in a car about their immigration status and if local police could make their own immigration sweeps. Opponents of the law, including the cities of Houston and Dallas, argued that the law’s vagueness is one of their biggest concerns.
The Justice Department is helping Texas defend the law in a San Antonio court.
Protesters gathered outside the court holding signs including “No SB4 Ever,” and “Stop Separation of Families.”
Garcia is unlikely to rule immediately.
PAUL J. WEBER