The outrage industry marches on. The latest and most egregious occurred at the University of California Berkeley. In response to a conservative speaker’s scheduled appearance, students and outsider left-wing activists teamed up to carry out violent mob attacks that included property destruction, fire, pepper-spraying and throwing paint at bystanders. The Berkeley campus police, presumably with UC Chancellor Janet Napolitano’s approval, were given a stand-down order, which meant that the rioters could continue their mayhem mostly unchecked. To date, among the hundreds of mutineers, police arrested only a few people, none affiliated with the university.
President Donald Trump immediately threatened to cut off UC’s federal funds. According to its website, the UC system receives billions of federal dollars. Berkeley, the system’s main campus, receives about $370 million annually. And federal funds of $827 million fully support the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Barbara Lee, the U.S. Rep. whose district includes Berkeley, countered that Trump doesn’t have the authority to cut off monies and that the president is abusing his power. But if it doesn’t provide adequate security for its next public event, UC would be taking a big gamble: enforce law and order or risk losing millions in funding.
Should UC and Napolitano continue in defiance, Trump might have a stronger hand to play than turning off the spigot. Under federal law, Napolitano could be ordered arrested on multiple counts of immigration lawbreaking.
Although it’s highly unlikely to happen, here’s the hypothetical but legal case. First, Napolitano is one of the instigators behind the creation of sanctuary campuses that collectively propose, on behalf of its illegal alien students, to restrict cooperation with immigration officials. Nearly 100 colleges nationwide have adopted sanctuary campus policies, but none has championed the concept as passionately as Napolitano. In a press release issued in November, Napolitano reaffirmed that UC will “act upon its deeply held conviction that all members of our community have the right to work, study and live safely and without fear at all  UC locations.”
Not only does Napolitano enthusiastically support alien students, she announced in May that the university would create a $25 million initiative spread out over three years for their benefit. Citing UC’s largesse as evidence of its commitment to “all Californians” and its assurance to be a vehicle for what she labeled “social mobility,” Napolitano argued that alien students deserve special university aid since they can’t qualify for federal grants and many work-study positions.
Napolitano is a former U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona, former Arizona governor, former Department of Homeland Security Secretary and University of Virginia law school graduate who knows that funding, harboring and providing services, in this case education and scholarships, to aliens violates Title 8 U.S. Code, Section 1324 (a). Thus criminal charges could be brought against her.
The administration has repeatedly stated that it will withhold funding from sanctuary cities, of which Berkeley is one, and can also bar federal monies from going to sanctuary campuses. The American Council on Education’s Senior Vice President Terry Hartle warned schools and universities who come to him that the federal government can withhold funding. Accordingly, Hartle advises them to be prepared, and to take the administration “at its word.”
A face-off looms. The showdown won’t lead to Napolitano’s arrest, but unless she decides to obey immigration law, it might cost UC millions.
A Californians for Population Stabilization Senior Writing Fellow, Joe Guzzardi.
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