A federal judge on Wednesday blocked most of Arizona’s anti-immigration law just hours before it was to take effect, spitting in the face of the majority of the American people.
U.S. District Court Judge Susan Bolton in Phoenix issued a temporary injunction against the parts of the law that would require police to determine the status of people they lawfully stopped and suspected were in the country illegally.
Bolton also ruled that Arizona can not make it a state crime to not carry immigration documents, and struck down two other provisions as an unconstitutional attempt by Arizona to undermine the federal government’s efforts to enforce immigration policy. What efforts?
Bolton (a Clinton appointee) declared in a 36-page decision that the provisions would have inevitably “swept up” legal immigrants and were “preempted” by the federal government’s immigration authority.
She also wrote:
The court by no means disregards Arizona’s interests in controlling illegal immigration and addressing the concurrent problems with crime.
But, she added:
It is not in the public interest for Arizona to enforce preempted laws.
It most certainly is, your honor, since the Obama Adminstration refuses to.
By the way, does this mean that Americans don’t have to carry their driver’s license and proof of insurance in their cars anymore?
Gov. Jan Brewer said that there would be a swift appeal to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals:
We would have liked to have seen it all upheld, but a temporary injunction is not the end of it. I look at this as a little bump in the road.
Immigrant rights advocates, some of whom had been bussed in for protests after the law takes effect at 12:01 a.m. Thursday, were simply joyous.
Lydia Guzman, president of Somos America, or We Are America proclaimed:
It’s a victory for the community. It means justice will truly prevail.
Not for Arizona Rancher Robert Krentz, God rest his soul.
Half of all people stopped for entering the country illegally are detained on Arizona’s southern border.
Civil rights groups and then the Obama administration sued, after Gov. Brewer signed the law, protesting that the measure would lead to racial profiling and interfere with the federal government’s ability to regulate immigration.
Obama’s administration does a poor job of regulating immigration now. And this is not going to help the situation any.
The Justice Department said in a statement:
While we understand the frustration of Arizonans with the broken immigration system, a patchwork of state and local policies would seriously disrupt federal immigration enforcement and would ultimately be counterproductive . States can and do play a role in cooperating with the federal government in its enforcement of the immigration laws, but they must do so within our constitutional framework.
Bolton allowed some technical parts of the law to go into effect. She preserved a clause that forbids any local entity from creating a policy of less than full enforcement of federal immigration laws, as well as a provision that makes it a misdemeanor to block traffic to solicit work or hire a worker, an effort aimed at getting rid of day laborers.
In Arizona, where American citizens cannot even go into some parts of our own National Parks because the Mexican Drug Lords have taken them over, the discussion was less about legal details and more about how illegal immigration has changed the state.
Faye Yanez, 65, a school teacher said:
The state should have a right to take care of the state because the federal government isn’t doing anything.
Preach, sister, preach.
Susie Baker, 53, who remodels homes in Tucson, felt differently:
I am thrilled. I think Jan Brewer is out of her mind. She is bringing harm to Arizona.
Baker said she often hires Latinos on home projects, and doesn’t ask them their immigration status:
To me, it doesn’t matter. They are willing to do the work.
Plus, she doesn’t have to pay them as much as American citizens.
Politicians’ reactions were heavily split down party lines (I’m shocked!) on whether they supported the bill. It received votes from all Republicans in the state Legislature and no Democrats.
The state’s two Republican U.S. senators, John Kyl and John McCain said in a statement that they were disappointed by the ruling:
Instead of wasting tax payer resources filing a lawsuit against Arizona and complaining that the law would be burdensome, the Obama administration should have focused its efforts on working with Congress to provide the necessary resources to support the state in its efforts to act where the federal government has failed to take responsibility.
Outside the federal courthouse in Phoenix, Vice Mayor Michael Nowakowski, a Democrat and strong foe of the law, said debate over SB 1070 had been a political sideshow that didn’t make the state safer. He completely negated the polls showing a majority of voters in Arizona and in the U.S. back the measure.
“Polls are for politicians before elections; they’re not for civil rights,” said Nowakowski, contending that many civil rights laws would have polled poorly in the 1950s and ’60s.
Hey, Mikey! Let’s look at some of those polls, shall we? Per rasmussenreports.com:
Fifty-four percent (54%) of U.S. voters say the Justice Department should take legal action against cities that provide sanctuary for illegal immigrants.
Regarding the administration challenging the Arizona law in court, a recent Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 56% of U.S. voters oppose such a challenge.
Just 26% believe the Justice Department should challenge the legality of Arizona’s law in court. Eighteen percent (18%) are undecided in the survey conducted May 26 and 27.
Fifty-eight percent (58%) of voters, in fact, favor passage of a law like Arizona’s in their own state.
Sixty-nine percent (69%) of voters believe a police officer should be required to check the immigration status of anyone stopped for a traffic violation or violation of some other law if he suspects the person might be an illegal immigrant.
Arizona voters support the state’s new immigration law overwhelmingly, with 71% in favor of it.
Sixty-four percent (64%) of voters believe the federal government by failing to enforce immigration law is more to blame for the current controversy over Arizona’s new statute than state officials are for passing it.
The law’s author, state Sen. Russell Pearce, has predicted in a television interview that the measure will be upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in a 5-4 vote.
The Supreme Court is already scheduled to consider another Arizona law this fall. That law dissolves any business that repeatedly and knowingly hires illegal immigrants. How they rule in this decision may give us a clue as to its view of SB 1070.
First, Gov. Brewer and the citizens of Arizona will have to take their fight to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, the most liberal Circuit Court of Appeals in the land. If they rule against her and her state there, then it’s on to the Supreme Court. The administration, in its arrogance, seemingly has not cared about the damage that a long, drawn out legal fight could do to the Democrats’ chances in the Mid-term Elections. Just as it did with Obamacare, this administration is trying to force their view of illegal immigration as a civil rights issue down the throats of the American public. It is very evident that, in the eyes of this administration, the safety of American citizens comes in a distant second to securing new Hispanic Democrat voters in their brazen effort to keep themselves in power.
Sources: drudgereport.com, latimes.com