SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Two local elected officials are among 15 from California invited to the White House next week.
The discussion will center on a hot topic: California's immigrant sanctuary laws.
President Trump has made border security one of his highest priorities, with San Diego a focal point and his border wall prototypes a visible sign of that.
- Board of Supervisors votes to support sanctuary state lawsuit against California
- Escondido City Council votes to support sanctuary policy lawsuit
State sanctuary laws forbid local governments to alert immigration officials when illegals are taken into custody.
A federal lawsuit is challenging that; with County Supervisor Kristin Gaspar and Escondido Mayor Sam Abed both strongly supporting the suit.
The White House plans a strategy session, including Gaspar and Abed, to share their thoughts.
"It's exciting! I'm honored!" Abed told 10News.
Abed is an immigrant himself and is eager for the meeting.
- Trump says border wall construction in San Diego will move forward afterrequest
- Team 10: Increase in arrests of immigrants smuggled into San Diego by sea
"Escondido has had a success story in coordinating with ICE and deporting illegal criminals from our community and I'm looking forward to sharing our success story and policies with the president and Washington," Abed said.
He points to impressive numbers in the interest of public safety. But since the sanctuary laws took effect, he's been upset with the result.
"We have deported over 2,000 illegal criminals from our community," he added. "They're going into our community, picking up not only criminals but also innocent people, separating families."
His message: Criminals benefit while innocents are hurt.
"They are less protected under the sanctuary state," Abed said.