Legal issues can be raised on both sides of U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton’s decision to do what some call ripping the heart out of Arizona’s Immigration Law.
The 10th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, also known as the States’ Rights Amendment, reads as follows:
“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
However, Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution includes giving Congress the federal authority to establish the Rules of Naturalization. The Judge found that the Constitution, therefore, leaves the matter of immigration to the federal government, excluding states’ individual rights. Or maybe not…
Is “establishing the rules of naturalization” the same as “preventing illegal immigration”?
This is where the confusion comes in. We can argue that the U.S. Constitution is now being used as a revolving door of sorts, too widely open to re-interpretation according to society’s trends. And yet, without ever changing the Constitution, we might still have slavery and women may still not be able to vote.
The illegal immigration trend may call for one of those changes:
The fact remains that Arizona’s Gov. Brewer was just trying to establish a law for the safety of her state, because the federal government has done nothing to increase border security. Arizona is one of three states with the worst illegal immigration problems stemming from the Mexican border.
Judge Bolton’s ruling could put a damper on Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum’s support for a Florida immigration policy similar to Arizona, and Florida State Senator Mike Bennett’s in-process draft of an Arizona-type immigration bill (see previous report here).
Mexico’s President Calderon weighs in – should his opinion matter to American lawmakers?
President Felipe Calderon of Mexico had stated in May that he “doesn’t like” Arizona’s law, and that it forces “migrant workers” to hide in the shadows. But migrant workers come here from Mexico because there’s no work to be found in their own country. In addition, nobody is forcing migrant workers to retain illegal status.
If Calderon wants open borders, he should examine his own country’s laws. Because, if an American were illegally trying to work or settle in Mexico, they would find themselves slammed in a Mexican prison with the key thrown away.
-U.S. Constitution: usconstitution.net.
-Liberty Counsel, Arizona Immigration Press Release, 7/28/10.
-“Calderon renews attack on Arizona immigration law,” BBC News, 5/19/10.
-“Bill McCollum: Florida should copy Arizona’s immigration law,” Beth Reinhard, Palm Beach Post, 5/13/10.