California became a “sanctuary state” on Thursday as Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation protecting illegal immigrants in defiance of the Trump administration.
The bill, approved by the state’s legislature last month, bars police from asking people about their immigration status or participating in federal immigration enforcement activities in most cases starting Jan. 1.
California is home to an estimated 2.3 million illegal immigrants.
In a written statement, Brown stressed that the law would not prohibit federal immigration officials from doing their jobs and would allow sheriffs to grant federal agents access to jails. But he said it prevents the “commandeering of local officials” to do immigration work.