As was generally expected the US Justice Department filed suit against the Arizona Immigration Law SB 1070 which is scheduled to take effect later this month. The crux of the DOJ’s argument is that immigration policy is the domain of the Federal Government. Let’s be clear, we are talking about illegal immigration; State and local law enforcements agencies have traditionally supported the enforcement of Federal Laws.
There are an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in the United States and the problem has been out of control for years. The Federal Government, including the DOJ, have failed miserably to secure the US borders and deal with the law breakers. Attorney General Holder and the DOJ have a duty to enforce existing laws.
Illegal immigration is not a Democratic or Republican issue; both parties have been negligent in dealing with the issue. Multiple Presidents and multiple sessions of Congress have failed to act. The State of Arizona acted to protect its citizens because the US Government is either unwilling or incapable to protect the borders of the Nation. It is ironic that the Justice Department is filling suit to defend foreigners who have broken US Immigration Laws. The DOJ and other Federal Law Enforcement agencies would better serve the American people by enforcing existing laws, apprehending the offenders and deporting them.
In May, Mexican President Felipe Calderon was in Washington on a State visit, Calderon met with President Obama and was allowed the privilege to address Congress; Calderon took the opportunity to bash Arizona in his Congressional address. Clearly cooperation is needed between the United States and Mexico to stop illegal immigration but it is offensive to have a foreign leader bash an American State in Congress.
In fairness to President Calderon, he has made several good points that are tied to the illegal immigration issue; they are the sale of firearms and the use of illegal drugs. Calderon points out that gun dealers in Arizona and other states have sold firearms that wind up in the hands of the Mexican drug gangs. Calderon also points out that the reason for the drug smuggling is due to the high demand for illegal drugs in the US. On both points the US needs to step up.
On June 8th Secretary of State Clinton in an interview in Ecuador commented that President Obama believes the Federal Government needs to set immigration policy and a lawsuit against Arizona would be forthcoming. Secretary Clinton certainly showed poor judgment publicly addressing this issue in a foreign nation.
It is pretty clear that the Obama Administration is hinting that an outright amnesty or a pathway to legal residence for illegal immigrants is on their agenda. How fair is that to those who have been legally applying to come to the United States? What does that say for the Administrations respect for the laws of the land?
It is also a disgrace that some American communities are boycotting Arizona because they are trying to protect themselves. The immigration laws should be enforced across all ethnic groups and illegals of all nationalities. The Arizona Immigration law is meant to protect all US citizens in Arizona.
The President, Congress and the DOJ have the obligation of protecting the borders and enforcing the laws; in regards to border control and illegal immigration they should start doing their job.
CBS Nightly News, WCBS-TV, July 6, 2010 6:30 PM Edition