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Exclusive: Divisions escalate between red states and blue cities

August 15, 2017

USA Today,


August 15, 2017-

When Veronica Zavaleta fled an abusive partner in Mexico City in 2001, she felt a sense of security in her new Nashville home. Today, Zavaleta, 43, says the town that embraced her years ago feels less welcoming, in part because state officials helped block a pro-immigrant measure by city leaders that would limit cooperation with federal immigration authorities. “I feel like I should be able to reach my local authorities,” said Zavaleta, who owns a cleaning company. “I don’t see why I can’t have a voice.”

Republicans control both houses of Congress, the White House and the state legislatures in 32 states. But Democrats have a wild card: They still lead a majority of the country’s largest cities, often introducing policies that clash with the ideals espoused by the Republican Party. That dynamic has frustrated state GOP leaders, who increasingly are focusing efforts on overriding decisions they deem too liberal in cities that include Nashville, Austin and Phoenix.

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