Thursday, April 29, 2010

Siding With Arizonans: "The issue is Sovereignty"

Some interesting commentary 0n Arizona's SB 1070, which is supported by 70% of the citizens:

Ramesh Ponnuru, writing in the Washington Post:

"The critics of Arizona's new immigration law are heavy on invective and moral self-congratulation, but they're light on facts....The new law is modest, and it may be vulnerable to the objection that it will not accomplish enough to be worth the controversy. But the debate over it, while often ignorant, has clarified something nonetheless.

Nearly everyone in the immigration debate has claimed to favor enforcing the immigration immigration laws. But if you think it is draconian to require that anyone have to show papers proving their legal status, then you're simply against enforcement. And if you really believe that, you're not going to change your mind just because the government has set up a "temporary worker" program or a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants: You're going to be against truly enforcing any conceivable set of immigration laws."

And Professor William Jacobsen, writing at "Legal Insurrection":

"I do not believe that most Americans share the view that controlling the border -- whether along the Mexican border or at JFK airport or at crossings from Canada -- is inherently racist; so too, it is not racist to enforce the immigration laws against people who violate the border controls.

Rather, the issue is sovereignty. Is the United States, like every other country in the world, entitled to control its borders, to determine who can enter and under what terms, and to enforce the laws which protect this sovereignty.

That is the debate we need to have, because the debate over the Arizona immigration law is just a sideshow in the larger national debate over sovereignty."

Kris Kobach, who helped draft the Arizona law, in today's New York Times:

"ON Friday, Gov. Jan Brewer of Arizona signed a law--SB 1070--that prohibits the harboring of illegal aliens and makes it a state crime for an alien to commit certain federal immigration crimes. It also requires police officers who, in the course of a traffic stop or other law-enforcement action, come to a "reasonable suspicion" that a person is an illegal alien verify the person's immigration status with the federal government.

Predictably, groups that favor relaxed enforcement of immigration laws, including the American Civil Liberties Union and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, insist the law is unconstitutional. Less predictably, President Obama declared it "misguided" and said the Justice Department would take a look.

Presumably, the government lawyers who do so will actually read the law, something its critics don't seem to have done."

And the law is apparently working already.

Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney

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