Demonstrators rally in front of Homestead City Hall against President-elect Donald Trump and ask that the city be used as a sanctuary city on Nov. 16 in Homestead, Fla. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Opinion writer

If you’re still confused about why Democrats lost the election, look no further than the issues they prioritize. Instead of focusing on jobs, the economy and national security, the Democrats obsess over climate change, bathroom breaks and, curiously, sanctuary cities. Now is a good time for the Republicans to pick some fights, and the issue of sanctuary cities is a prime target. It’s a perfect reminder of what Democrats have become. As my old boss Lee Atwater used to say, “Never kick a man when he is up.” And right now, the Democrats are down, divided and in disarray.

The issue of sanctuary cities is one that is ripe for Republicans, if for no other reason than the Democrats’ position is so indefensible. The very idea that city officials will blatantly disobey the law in furtherance of aiding foreign nationals who have entered city limits illegally is wrong on so many levels. Republicans should seize the opportunity to make the Democrats publicly defend their position.

Following Donald Trump’s election, liberals jumped to the defense of sanctuary cities, pledging to maintain sanctuary cities and protect illegal immigrants from the Trump administration. Mayor Rahm Emanuel said outright that Chicago will always be a sanctuary city, sending a message to anyone who was “very nervous and filled with anxiety” after Trump’s win that “you are safe in Chicago, you are secure in Chicago, and you are supported in Chicago.” There is always a lot of talk about what presidents are going to do on their first day in office. Well, I hope that on Sen. Jeff Sessions’s (R-Ala.) first day in office as attorney general, he’ll make his presence known with sanctuary-city officials who are flouting the law.

I applaud Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who has already issued an order cutting funding to sanctuary cities and who plans to follow that up with an outright ban on sanctuary cities in his state. But he needs reinforcement from the national Republican Party and from Washington, D.C. It’s time to take the fight to the Democrats and others who want to push sanctuary cities in defiance of federal law. Hopefully, the Republicans will reintroduce Sen. Patrick J. Toomey’s (R-Pa.) Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities bill, which withholds federal funding from those who refuse to cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, and Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-Tex.) Kate’s Law, which also aims to coerce cities into cooperating with ICE and is named after Kate Steinle, who was murdered at random in sanctuary city San Francisco by an illegal immigrant who had already been deported five times.

It’s time for Republicans to challenge Democrats on this issue. As long as Trump is still tweeting too much, this is worth a tweet.