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Debunking President Trump’s False Claims on California, Immigrants, and Crime

On April 19th, President Donald Trump sent out a tweet criticizing California Governor Jerry Brown. Mr. Brown announced that while he will comply with the Administration’s demand for National Guard support at the border, he is heavily restricting what will occur on California National Guard patrols. In attacking Governor Brown, President Trump’s tweet alluded to California’s so-called ‘high crime rate’ and implied that our state’s large immigrant population is the source of that problem.

President’s Trump remarks, along with his prior statements on these issues, are false on several different grounds. California does not have a high crime rate, immigrants do not commit more crimes, and Governor Brown’s actions are no different than those of the governors in other states along the Mexican border. Here, our Los Angeles immigration lawyers explain the three different falsehoods in President Trump’s recent tweet.

1. California’s Crime Rate is Below the National Average

It is no secret that California is a state with a large immigrant population. As our law firm has discussed before, it is by far the most popular state among people moving to the United States. California not only has the most immigrants, it has the highest percentage of immigrants of any American state. Notably, California is also safer than the average state. According to the most recent data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the violent crime rate in California is nearly eight percent lower than the national average.

2. Immigrants Commit Less Crime Than Native-Born Americans

Beyond California being a safer state than the average, immigrants actually commit fewer crimes than do native-born citizens. Sadly, there is a pervasive myth that the opposite is true. Immigrants, particularly undocumented immigrants, often face harmful stereotypes. Yet, the research on this issue is very clear: immigrants commit less crime. An article published in The New York Times offers useful visuals to highlight some of the most recent data on this issue.

3. California Governor Jerry Brown’s Actions are Similar to Red State Governors

Finally, President Trump’s complaint about Governor Jerry Brown is misleading. While the White House has demanded that National Guard troops be deployed to provide support in all southern states, the National Guard is not directly enforcing U.S. immigration law in any state. The National Guard troops are not carrying weapons and they are not empowered to make arrests. It appears that President Trump’s real problem is that our state’s governor is not willing to adopt the same anti-immigrant views and anti-immigrant rhetoric as the president.

Contact Our Los Angeles Immigration Law Team Today

At the Law Office of Joshua L. Goldstein, PC, we are proud to be strong advocates for immigrant communities throughout Southern California. If you or your loved one needs immigration law guidance, we are here to help. For a fully private consultation, please call our Los Angeles office now at (213) 262-2000 or reach out to us directly through our website.