EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Trump Campaign Says Anti-ICE Politicians ‘Aiding and Abetting’ Drug Dealers and Human Traffickers


CINCINNATI, Ohio – President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence came to Cincinnati, Ohio’s U.S. Bank Arena Thursday evening. Trump campaign Director of Communications Tim Murtaugh spoke exclusively with The Ohio Star before the event about anti-ICE politicians and President Trump’s support of replacing federal Common Core with state and local control.

Just a week before the president’s event, Cincinnati Council Member PG Sittenfeld announced his plan to create a “Rapid Response Network,” or RRN, to “protect immigrants in Cincinnati.” He said it was “because of the current ‘occupant’ of the White House.”

Murtaugh had some thoughts about that. “President Trump has talked about this issue for three years and he’s not going to stop. He’s been very clear about the dangers sanctuary cities and states pose to American citizens. He’s talked about cutting off federal money to them.”

“The president is against any city, state or locality refusing to cooperate with law enforcement. These cities, states and localities are incentivizing illegal immigration and endangering law enforcement,” he added.

Murtaugh talked about the consequences of anti-ICE laws. “Kate Steinle is the direct result of sanctuary laws that protect criminal illegal immigrants and put American citizens at risk. The president is committed to protecting American citizens and enforcing American laws.”

Trump spoke about the Steinle murder and other Americans harmed by the sanctuary city policies in his speech at the Republican National Convention.

“But where was the sanctuary for Kate Steinle? Where was sanctuary for the children of Mary Ann, Sabine and Jamiel. Where was sanctuary for all the other- ah it’s so sad to even be talking about it cause we can solve this problem so quickly,” Trump said.

When asked if local ordinances like the one Sittenfeld is pushing would equate to “aiding and abetting” drug dealers and human traffickers, Murtaugh said “absolutely.”

“Warning illegal immigrants of ICE raids and stopping local law enforcement from cooperating with ICE absolutely helps drug traffickers and people who traffic human beings,” he said. “And children are especially vulnerable to human traffickers. So yes, these city officials and other politicians who think they’re making a statement, helping non-citizens, are indeed aiding and abetting drug dealers and human traffickers.”

Another question Murtaugh answered was about education. Ohio has been fighting Common Core for years and another bill is expected from legislators in the next few months. The Ohio Star discovered that students have not improved in the state since Common Core was accepted. One major complication has been the threat that the U. S. Department of Education would pull federal funds from Ohio if it replaced the system pushed by the Obama Administration.

“The president believes that parents and teachers in local communities know better how their children should learn and does not believe in one-size-fits-all dictates from the federal government,” Murtaugh said. “The president does not believe in a top-down system and he does not support Common Core. I haven’t seen the Ohio proposal, but the president believes states and local districts should make their own education choices.”

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Beth Lear is a reporter at The Ohio Star.  Follow Beth on Twitter.  Email tips to [email protected].






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