Supreme Court to Consider AZ's Illegal Immigration Law


Against the expressed wishes of Obama White House lawyers, the United States Supreme Court has agreed to resolve the Obama Department of Justice’s lawsuit against the State of Arizona over its get-tough illegal immigration law (SB 1070). The decision comes just weeks after the High Court announced it would take on a lawsuit over the constitutionality of Obamacare, setting the stage for two extremely contentious legal battles in the middle of a heated presidential election year.

According to Bloomberg:

The U.S. Supreme Court said it will consider reviving the trailblazing Arizona law that would use local police and prosecutors to crack down on illegal immigration.

Already set to rule on President Barack Obama’s health-care law by the middle of next year, the justices today added another high-profile case that has implications for similar laws around the country and for the 2012 elections.

On April 11, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld an injunction against the enforcement of some of the law’s provisions, prompting the State of Arizona to petition the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.

Back in September, Judicial Watch filed an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief with the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of our client, the Arizona State Legislature, which is now a defendant in the lawsuit in support of the Supreme Court petition. And as I said in a press statement at the time, “We hope the Supreme Court accepts the State of Arizona’s petition, protects the rule of law and upholds the rights of the States to protect its citizens.”

Well, we’re one step closer.

The State of Arizona will now have the opportunity to demonstrate that SB 1070 is completely consistent with federal law. As the Legislature argued in its court filing:

The [Arizona] Legislature invoked its well established police powers in crafting SB 1070, for the purpose of protecting the people of Arizona. Rather than welcoming the Legislature’s enactment, the United States sued Arizona.

Contrary to the view of the United States, not every state action related to aliens is preempted by federal law…Only the determination of who should or should not be admitted into the country, and the conditions under which that person may remain, is the regulation of immigration.

Accordingly, the Legislature enacted SB 1070 in reliance on the principle that it had authority to utilize well-established police powers in areas touching on immigration…

Look, the Obama administration’s game plan on illegal immigration is crystal clear: bypass Congress and grant amnesty to millions of illegal aliens by suspending deportations; tell sanctuary cities that they will not be prosecuted for ignoring federal immigration laws; and attack any state that attempts to protect citizens from the scourge of illegal immigration through law enforcement. The endgame for the Obama administration is to legalize millions of dependably liberal voters before the 2012 elections and to curry favor with the all-important Hispanic voter demographic – politics over the rule of law.

I expect the Supreme Court Justices who hear this case will ignore the political scheming and conniving by the Obama administration and will instead look purely at what the law dictates. And if they do, they will see that SB 1070 is a commonsense and constitutional response to the significant problems Arizona faces as a border state on an uncontrolled border.

As former Arizona State Senate President Russell Pearce, the author of SB 1070, has stated:

States have an inherent duty under law and the Constitution to protect their citizens from those who break our laws. I pray the Supreme Court honors states’ inherent authority and right under the police powers and supports Arizona in the protection of our state from the Obama administration, who has sided with foreign governments against our state and our citizens. The Obama administration’s attack on our state’s sovereign right to defend itself from the illegal alien invasion is unconscionable.

Former Senator Pearce also noted that the enacted provisions of SB 1070 have already helped reduce crime significantly and have led to a mass exodus of illegal aliens from the State of Arizona. So not only is SB 1070 lawful, it’s also effective. Let’s hope the Supreme Court overturns the lower court’s moratorium and SB 1070 (along with similar state laws also under attack) can be put into full force!


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