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In latest flight of imagination, Trump says Californians are ‘rioting’ over ‘sanctuary cities’

This is...not true.

LAS VEGAS, NV - SEPTEMBER 20:  U.S. President Donald Trump (L) talks with U.S. Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) during a campaign rally at the Las Vegas Convention Center on September 20, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - SEPTEMBER 20: U.S. President Donald Trump (L) talks with U.S. Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) during a campaign rally at the Las Vegas Convention Center on September 20, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

At a campaign event in support of incumbent Senator Dean Heller (R-NV), President Donald Trump said Californians were “rioting” in opposition against  “sanctuary cities” — the term given to municipalities that fail to cooperate with federal immigration investigations and deportations.

They are not.

Trump’s comments came as he criticized Heller’s opponent in the upcoming midterm election, Rep. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) who in June of 2017 voted against the No Sanctuary For Criminals Act, which seeks to deprive such “sanctuary” jurisdictions of federal monies as punishment for their non-compliance.

TRUMP: Jacky votes against the people of Nevada every chance she gets. She voted no tax cuts, no on better health care, no on border security, and Jacky voted in favor of deadly sanctuary cities. I don’t think we like sanctuary cities up here. By the way a lot of people in California don’t want them either. They’re rioting now.

As the Nevada Independent reported in August, sanctuary cities have become a hot button issue in the Silver State’s electoral politics. And Trump is correct that the issue has been the source of conflict among Californians as well. In April 2018, the San Jose Mercury News’ Tatiana Sanchez reported that a city council vote in Los Alamitos touched off a “wave of dissent” on the issue — one that Trump noticed. Per Sanchez:

At least 14 Southern California cities and two counties have passed ordinances, and in some cases filed lawsuits, against the state’s controversial sanctuary laws that largely prohibit local and state authorities from cooperating with federal immigration officers.

“There is a Revolution going on in California,” President Trump tweeted last week, as part of almost a solid week of taunting Gov. Jerry Brown over his plans to restrict the state’s National Guard troops from enforcing federal immigration law at the border.

Most of this resistance to sanctuary cities was limited to Orange County, California, traditionally a conservative redoubt, but one that voted for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump in 2016.

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The April story in the Mercury News carried the headline, “California cities are rebelling against state sanctuary law, but how far can they go?” and discussed such matters as “revolt” and “resistance.” Nevertheless, there have been no riots in California over this issue, then or now.

At the same rally, President Trump asserted that “Republicans will always protect people with pre-existing conditions.” If their voting record is any guide, they will not.