From the front page of today’s St. Louis Post-Dispatch under the headline “U.S. battles Arizona law in suit over immigration” . . . “The Justice Department, contending that immigration is a federal responsibility, sued Arizona on Tuesday and asked a federal court to halt the state’s new law aimed at illegal immigrants.
“Attorney General Eric Holder said the lawsuit was prepared after extensive consultation with law enforcement officials and civil rights groups that oppose the state law.
“’Setting immigration policy and enforcing immigration laws is a national responsibility,’ Holder said.”
This story sent me over the edge and dragged me out of my self-imposed hiatus. Two important points need to be made:
First, the Obama administration prepared this lawsuit “after extensive consultation” with people and groups “that oppose the state law.” Maybe they should be consulting some of the folks in Arizona dealing with the reality of failed immigration enforcement. Maybe they should be consulting with some people who support the law before deciding to attack it. Maybe there is a way for Washington and Phoenix to work together. In a rational world, there would be.
Second, the lawsuit is based on the reality that the federal government is supposed to be protecting America’s borders. Attorney General Holder’s words, “setting immigration policy and enforcing immigration laws is a national responsibility,” could not be more true. Unfortunately, they miss the point of the Arizona law entirely . . .
THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS NOT MEETING ITS “RESPONSIBILITY.” Until it does, someone must, and Arizona is trying. Whether their approach is perfect or not is a matter for another day.
If the federal government wants the states to stay out of immigration enforcement, the federal government should enforce our immigration laws and protect America’s borders.