AFP reports, and you have got to roll your eyes over the headline, “US government sues Arizona over anti-immigration law.” No the law is not “anti-immigration” it is anti-illegal immigration, but this is the type of media spin we should be accustomed to. I digress… they write:
A Justice Department statement said it was challenging the new state law in the courts because it hampered the authority of the administration of President Barack Obama to enforce national immigration policy.
It also placed significant "burdens" on federal agencies and law enforcement, the department argued.
Federal laws do not permit the development of a "patchwork of state and local immigration policies," it said.
"Setting immigration policy and enforcing immigration laws is a national responsibility," US Attorney General Eric Holder said in the statement.
Arizona, the Justice Department said, "crossed a constitutional line."
Some questions that come to mind as I read this statement yesterday…
How does a state enforcing federal law hamper the administration’s ability to enforce national immigration policy?
What examples can the administration cite where they’ve enforced national immigration policy (as far as what the law states, not what their political position is)?
If they are overburdened shouldn’t they welcome state assistance?
I wonder if Attorney General Eric Holder has still hasn’t read the Arizona law as it just mirrors existing federal law. So how does this represent a patchwork?
Holder is right that setting immigration policy and enforcing immigration law is a national responsibility. Why have they done a lousy job doing it?
Also state and local law enforcement agencies partner with federal agencies in enforcing federal law all of the time, how is this any different?
What constitutional line has been crossed?
Obviously the Obama Administration had no plans to work with Arizona on this issue. They’ve resisted it from the get go, and I think the reason they have done is because they don’t agree with existing federal law (apparently they don’t like voting rights laws either). They could have avoided this by just enforcing their own law, but here they are wasting taxpayer money fighting against a law that has taxpayer support. Crazy.
If the federal court does not rule in Arizona’s favor, here we have another opportunity for a state to apply nullification.