NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — President Donald Trump says he’s sending hundreds of federal law enforcement officers into cities to combat alarming increases in crime.
The problem is, city leaders didn’t ask for their help.
And here at home, Mayor Bill de Blasio says he will fight to keep out federal agents, CBS2’s Aundrea Cline-Thomas reported Wednesday.
“Under Operation: Legend, we will also soon send federal law enforcement to other cities that need help. Other cities need help. They need it badly. They should call. They should want it,” Trump said.
“If we see these federal officers on our streets, then we will see the Trump administration in court,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
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The mayor sent a letter to the U.S. attorney general and Department of Homeland Security secretary to make it clear that federal law enforcement agents are not welcome in the city.
“We do not consent. They are not needed. And they have proved to bring way more harm than good,” de Blasio wrote.
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It comes as President Trump vows to send federal officers, like the ones dispatched to Portland, Ore., to other cities.
In Portland, the officers, who wear military-style fatigues, have deployed tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse crowds of protesters in an effort to stop attacks on the federal courthouse.
“I believe, unfortunately, the president is using this as a photo-op for his own political needs,” de Blasio said.
Watch Dick Brennan’s report —
On Wednesday, President Trump said federal officials would go to Chicago and Albuquerque, N.M., next. The move is in direct response to increases in crime and nationwide protests calling to defund the police. While no plans were outlined for New York City, it was cited as raising concerns.
“These politicians have embraced the far left movement to break up our police departments, causing violent crime in their cities to spiral — and I mean spiral seriously — out of control. In New York City, over 300 people were shot in the last month alone,” Trump said.
But states are coming together and preparing to fight back.
“I have been in touch with my counterparts in other cities and we are prepared and are preparing to attack this in a coordinated way,” said James Johnson of the Corporation Council of New York City.
The fear is if federal law enforcement arrives unannounced, the already-brewing tensions will boil over, making matters even worse.
The Justice Department will provide $61 million in grants to hire more officers for this effort.