King County Executive Dow Constantine released the following statement after the U.S. Department of Justice announced a lawsuit over ICE detainee flights from King County Airport:
“It is no surprise that Trump and Barr are bullying King County for being a welcoming community that respects the rights of all people. Our ordinances rightly require that King County facilitate immigration enforcement directives only when accompanied by a valid court order. Mass deportations raise deeply troubling human rights concerns, including separation of families, racial disproportionality in policing, and constitutional issues of due process.
"My Executive Order of April 23, 2019, sought to make King County government practices consistent with our region's values. I am pleased to say local airport operators notified us that they would voluntarily no longer serve charters used by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. We are already actively engaged in an administrative process with the FAA to resolve our differing interpretations. The Trump administration and Attorney General Barr chose to circumvent this work for the sake of grabbing headlines. The Justice Department initiated a legal fight over our regional airport rather than working with Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform. We look forward to our day in court.”