New York Governor Andrew Cuomo warned immigration officials on Wednesday that if the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency continues immigration raids without proper warrants, the state of New York will sue.
Cuomo said at a press conference Wednesday that unannounced raids endangered public safety because armed men “with no identification” often showed up to private businesses and residences without “coordinating or notifying” local officials.
“I understand the Constitution of the United States, and it doesn’t say the federal government can come in and do whatever it wants whenever it wants,” Cuomo said.
This is not a new argument; Cuomo was basically repeating what activists have been teaching for a long time—that immigration raids conducted without a warrant signed by a judge are invalid and unconstitutional.
In a more meaningful move, Cuomo also announced he was issuing an executive order prohibiting ICE from detaining immigrants in state facilities—like courthouses—and prohibiting state agencies from inquiring about immigration status.
“I think it’s time a state stood up to ICE and made this case and let them know that people have rights,” Cuomo said at the press conference.
He said the state had also approved a budget to form a network that would provide legal counsel to immigrants who are detained by ICE.
Cuomo has been making more aggressively activist moves ever since Cynthia Nixon began running against him in New York’s Democratic primary. His actions on Wednesday came after Nixon was endorsed by Make the Road, the biggest immigrant rights group in the state.