The term “sanctuary state” is a phrase that takes on different meanings in politically-charged conversations. Members of the Republican party see sanctuary states or sanctuary cities as places where illegal immigrants are protected. On the other hand, the Democratic view of sanctuary states are areas where illegal immigrants are protected from aggressive attempts of deportation.
In general, though, the term sanctuary state means a state that limits its cooperation with federal immigration enforcement agents as much as possible to protect illegal immigrants that have come to this country to make a living. While some illegal immigrants are protected, those that commit serious crimes are turned over to authorities.
Some proponents of sanctuary states and cities believe that the term is misleading, which is why some use the term “safe” to replace sanctuary.
Whether you agree with it or not, the fact remains that there are sanctuary cities and sanctuary states in the United States. This has come to light in recent years, as President Donald Trump has aggressively pushed for the removal of all illegal immigrants.
As of early 2019, there are seven sanctuary states, according to the Center for Immigration Studies. Those states are:
- New Mexico