SB 1070 – What’s Next for Illegal Immigration in Arizona?
Now that a federal court has ruled against Arizona’s contentious illegal immigration law (SB 1070), what’s next for Arizona and other states trying to combat illegal immigration?
Once again, let me say I’m neither a constitutional expert, nor am I a lawyer, but here are some thoughts off the top of my head:
1) If Arizona is forbidden from enforcing immigration laws on a state level, can Arizona – or any other state – sue the federal government for failing to do so?
2) Since the Arizona immigration law was so popular among voters, will this mean the Obama administration will take steps to enforce immigration laws on a federal level more thoroughly?
3) If the current administration does nothing about the very real illegal immigration problem, will swing voters who care about this issue be more likely to vote conservative/Republican in hopes that a new congress will enact tougher sanctions on illegal immigrants?
4) I believe the next step for Arizona is the 9th Circuit. Personally, I feel there is very little chance the 9th Circuit will overturn the lower court’s ruling. It seems much of this case hangs on the supremacy clause of the Constitution. In other words, the federal law supersedes state law. Immigration is a federal issue. What about other federal issues and what precedent does this set for them? For instance, can and will courts use this ruling to challenge state medial marijuana laws? Drug control is also a federal issue, but many of the liberal organizations (read ACLU) against SB 1070 are for state drug laws superseding federal ones.
5) How will this issue affect the current, increasing struggle between the federal government and state governments? Has the federal government now grown so powerful it can just seize control of everything and call it the province of the feds? Will there be a huge backlash by the states to decentralize power?
6) How will this court ruling affect Jan Brewer? She’s become something of a conservative hero around the country. Will losing this case diminish her popularity and chances for re-election? Or will it strengthen her in the minds of her supporters and propel her to an easy victory?
7) How will this affect US/Mexican relations? As you may or may not have read, Mexican officials are now planning to patrol Staten Island following a string of horrible racially motivated violence against Latinos. Violence should not be tolerated. If we can do something about race-based violence, we should. WE should. And now we’re going to allow foreign officials to police our lands? Bad idea. Bad, bad idea.
8) How will this affect the rate of illegal border crossings? As everyone has said, illegal border crossings have diminished the past couple of years. Will that trend now change since SB 1070 has essentially been defanged? Will this ruling send a message to illegals that they are welcome here? ARE they welcome here, officially?
9) Speaking of racial violence, will the court’s ruling provoke a violent backlash against the Latino community? Of course, most of us realize violence against any racial group – indeed, against any one other than in self defense – is absolutely unacceptable. But there are nuts out there, and I’m afraid they will take their craziness out on innocent Latinos, legal or illegal. Aside from the political ramifications of this, we can’t allow a visible segment of our population to walk around with targets on their backs. How do we combat such an outbreak, if indeed one occurs?
As far as I’m concerned, SB 1070 has served its real purpose, which was to draw swift, focused attention to the very real problem of illegal immigration. Every time SB 1070 is mentioned, whether favorably or negatively, the debate is re-opened. We need real immigration reform, not amnesty. Reagan tried amnesty and see where it got him? We need real enforcement of federal law, not sanctuary cities. We need secure borders, not to protect us from honest, hard working Latinos, but to protect us from the dishonest, criminal elements of all countries who enter this land for nefarious purposes. We need a better path to legal residency and citizenship for those people who want to come to this country for the right reasons: to live the American dream, not to undermine it.
Statistics I’ve read say that most illegal immigrants (slightly over 50%) are people from all nations who entered the country legally and overstayed their visas. We can’t become the country of “oh, well.” We can’t sit idly by and let people start off being American by disobeying our fundamental laws and our sovereignty. We just can’t. It doesn’t matter the color of skin, the religion, the political leanings of anyone who comes here. What matters is a fundamental right to control our own country.
I hope Jan Brewer fights until the bitter end, whatever that end will be. We can’t live in a country where Mexico controls our foreign policy. We can’t live in a country where some courts uphold Sharia law. We can’t live in a country with different rules for different segments of the citizenry. We can’t have foreign security and police officials patrolling our cities. This is the way to balkanization by apathy and it must not stand.
Jan Brewer is a hero to me. If I lived in Arizona, I would vote for her. If I can, I will support her. I will continue to voice my praise for the Latino community at large as being a vital, integral part of the US, not for being a separatist state within a state. I will continue to voice my outrage at the federal government for failure to do anything about this very real problem. I will vote for the most conservative, SB 1070 supporting candidates I can find until the borders are secure and the issue has been dealt with. I will continue to fly the American flag proudly. I will continue to write about this issue and others. And, if it should come to the worst, and the media is controlled, the flag is outlawed and the Republic dies, I will die with it, because where else would I go? I am an American.
As a famous Latino once said (and, true, one with whom I don’t necessarily agree), better to die on your feet than live on your knees.