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  • Arizona v. United States: Showdown in the Supreme Court

    For the second year in a row, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear an immigration case out of the State of Arizona.  And for the second time is as many years, the Obama administration has sued the State of Arizona in the hopes of stopping its state law aimed at curbing the problem of illegal immigration.

    The Heritage Foundation will host a distinguished panel next Monday, April 23rd, to preview the arguments next week before the Supreme Court.  To RSVP, click here.

    Recall that on May 26, 2011, the Court issued its 5-3 decision in Chamber of Commerce v. Whiting that upheld the Legal Arizona Workers Act of 2007, allowing the state to require employers to use the E-Verify system and revoke the business licenses of employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants.  After that decision, we wrote that the impact of that common sense ruling was to give states “a license to enforce immigration laws.”

    The legal issue before the nations’ highest court next week is whether federal immigration law prevents Arizona from engaging in cooperative law enforcement and impliedly preempts four provisions of S.B. 1070.   That law allows an Arizona law enforcement officer who stops someone based on reasonable suspicion that they committed a crime—if the officer develops independent reasonable suspicion that the person is an illegal alien—to question the person about his nationality.

    That common sense procedure is necessary to fight the disruptive influx of illegal aliens in the state, and does not violate federal immigration law according to the State of Arizona.  Arizona claims that that provision of the law has been narrowly tailored to prevent racial profiling.  Opponents of S.B. 1070, including illegal aliens’ rights groups and the Obama Justice Department, claim that the law is preempted by federal immigration law and thus is unconstitutional.

    There are similarities between the case last year and the one presently before the High Court.

    First, Supreme Court Associate Justice Elena Kagan recused herself in the Whiting case.  As Obama’s former Solicitor General, in charge of all matters before the Court, she decided not to take part in the case, hence the eight votes (5-3) instead of the typical nine voting members in a typical decision.  She has recused herself in the S.B. 1070 for next week as well.

    Second, the Obama administration has joined forces once again with advocates for illegal aliens, including the ACLU, MALDEF, National Council of La Raza, and the American Bar Association (among others) in the case against Arizona.  They lost last year, and may lose again, based in part on the reasoning set forth in the Whiting case.

    Former Solicitor General Paul Clement, who recently argued before the Supreme Court on behalf of 26 states in the Obamacare case, will represent the State of Arizona.  In the first sentence of his brief to the Court, Mr. Clement explains the negative impact of the federal governments’ uneven enforcement of immigration laws on Arizona saying, “Arizona shoulders a disproportionate burden of the national problem of illegal immigration.”

    Those problems include increased crime by illegal aliens and staggering financial costs in areas of crime control, medical expenses, and education.  Arizona has spent hundreds of millions of taxpayer money to cover the cost of illegal immigration in its state along.  As Arizona’s brief before the Court states, “The public-safety and economic strains that this places on Arizona and its residents have created an emergency situation, which demanded a response.”  That response was S.B. 1070.

    How the Court will ultimately rule is anyone’s guess.  But the Obama administration has an uphill battle because of the Court’s ruling in WhitingAs we wrote last year,

    Whiting settles the broad question of whether immigration enforcement is exclusively assigned to the federal government: It is not. Federal immigration laws “expressly contemplate and authorize cooperative law enforcement efforts between federal and state officials.”  Despite wishful claims to the contrary, Whiting does have strong predictive value, and it will be powerful precedent in the forthcoming S.B. 1070 case.

    Given that the Arizona statute carefully tracks with existing federal laws, the Obama Justice Department will have to assert some flavor of implied preemption to support its claim of unconstitutionality. But as the Court said in Whiting, “Implied preemption analysis does not justify a ‘freewheeling judicial inquiry into whether a state statute is in tension with federal objectives’; such an endeavor ‘would undercut the principle that it is Congress rather than the courts that preempts state law.’”

    Thus, the Court recognized its proper role in Whiting and its decision gives us a hopeful outlook for the fate of S.B. 1070.

    Posted in Featured [slideshow_deploy]

    14 Responses to Arizona v. United States: Showdown in the Supreme Court

    1. rked says:

      Great article, & good news since I too am optimistic that Arizonia Will prevail against obobo's group of ILLEGAL thugs……And then watch what Will happen as State after State passes their own Anti-Illegal Bill….the obamination IS trying very hard to keep ILLEGALS here so he can get them to Vote for him….But the Rule of Law, Citizen's, Taxpayers & Voters WILL Prevail……!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Slick says:

        BUT will all these laws be too late to stop the re-election of the Prez???? The gov't is blocking all laws requiring proof of identity when voting . . . . WHEN will this war between the Federal Gov't and the American people end?

    2. George M. Papa says:

      Arizona's subject immigration law is discredited. Not one person has been apprehended due to this law. This is because a lower federal district court judge in Arizona (the Honorable Susan Bolton) has already gutted it. All Illegal immigration arrests have instead been made under prior existing federal law, which has jurisdiction over state law.

      Also, the author of the subject law now before the Supreme Court is the former President of the Arizona State Senate. His name is Russell Pierce. He has been impeached and replaced and booted out of the State Senate for his role in writing and orchestrating the passage of this improper and unconstitutional law.

      • hacimo says:

        The law was indeed quashed by a federal judge. The whole reason for this case is to see if that judge made the right ruling. We will soon see if the the law has been "gutted" or if it will have the desired results. As to Mr. Pierce. We all know that if he had won the recent election you and other supports of illegal Aliens would be singing a different turn. His fate is thus irrelevant. However, one may note that his opponent in the election was also a republican and has also taken a very strong stand in favor of enforcing immigration laws. The election was actually decided on local issues that have nothing to do with immigration. We will see how popular Mr. Pierce is when he runs again in the next election. I expect the results will be disappointing to the likes of yourself.

      • Carol, AZ says:

        George : Your statement as fact:_ " Not one person has been apprehended due to this law" is frankly pathetic.This law was written to protect all American from the Federal Lawlessness not to enforce our border and also declare war on AZ. We all got the message here early on, so did Mr Pearce, and Gov Brewer._Thatt message IS, our own govt was and still is supporting the terrorist backed cartel operative in MX and S. America while we're protecting you.

    3. steve says:

      When did we lose our common sense? Our Government, has allowed the invasion of 30 million criminals in direct violation of Article IV, Section IV of our Constitution. they force American tax payers to pay Billions to provide Welfare, Prison cells, Educate the invaders children, free medical care,massive document fraud, & are destroying our schools, hospitals, communities, culture while Robbing, Raping, Killing & Assaulting American Citizens WE ARE BEING INVADED! WAKE UP PEOPLE!
      An education is a good thing.

      step #1 http://bit.ly/oBuTUd http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-NVT7lyNRZQ&fehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tsH8xvjTAlo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Btj6IeOFkis&fehttp://immigrationcounters.com/ http://ojjpac.org/memorial.asp http://www.immigrationshumancost.org/ http://www.newswithviews.com/Wooldridge/frosty580http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muw22wTePqQ http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/07/02/immigration-http://www.rense.com/general81/dtli.htm http://www.wnd.com/?pageId=41045 http://www.cairco.org/econ/econ.html http://www.diggersrealm.com/mt/archives/003335.ht
      Every Non-representative including obama and holder are not upholding the oath of office! they swore to defend the Constitution! If these clowns were to do their job, this would all be a Moot point!
      Anchors and their criminal parents go, period, you knew you were breaking the law when you crossed the border.
      Next shut down any business hiring illegal labor. Oh and owners go to jail.
      any better ideas? lets hear them!

      I come for visit, get treated regal,
      So I stay, who care I illegal?
      I cross border, poor and broke,
      Take bus, see employment folk.
      Nice man treat me good in there,
      Say I need to see welfare.
      Welfare say, "You come no more,
      We send cash right to your door."
      Welfare checks, they make you

      Medicaid it keep you healthy!
      By and by, I got plenty money,
      Thanks to you, American dummy.
      Write to friends in motherland,
      Tell them come as fast as you can.
      They come in rags and Chebby

      I buy big house with welfare bucks.
      They come here, we live together,
      More welfare checks, it gets better!
      Fourteen families they moving in,
      But neighbor's patience wearing thin.
      Finally, white guy moves away,
      Now I buy his house, and then I say,
      "Find more aliens for house to rent."

      And in the yard I put a tent.
      Send for family (they just trash),
      But they, too, draw the welfare cash!
      Everything is mucho good,
      And soon we own the neighborhood.
      We have hobby–it's called breeding,
      Welfare pay for baby feeding.
      Kids need dentist? Wife need pills?
      We get free! We got no bills!

      American crazy! He pay all year,
      To keep welfare running here.
      We think America darn good place!
      Too darn good for the white man

      If they no like us, they can go,
      Got lots of room in Mexico

    4. STEVEN says:

      I have always maintaned immigration is a sates rights issue. Why would any state give up it's
      rightful power to control it's own economy? Illegal immigration has a direct bearing on a states financial
      stability. It's only common sense to verify, that those entitled to vote are who they say they are.
      Everyone always complains about voter fraud, this legislation is a big step in eleminating that problem.
      Why then would anyone oppose this law? For votes of course!!
      To date, all the reasons for objecting to this law are, absurd, illogical, unreasonable and made only by those with a liberal agenda.

    5. Bob says:

      I hope the case is won by Arizona. God Bless them for trying!

    6. alcon says:

      Immigration is a state rights issue. The Obama administration is shirking its duty to protect and defend the citizens of the US and has instead elected to support illegal immigration and is deterring actions of states who want to protect their citizens. The current administration is working overtime to usurp power from states and from citizens.

    7. Larry says:

      It is a simple thing. If we do not take absolute control of our borders, stop the illegals and deport them, our country as we KNEW it will cease to exist. We are almost there, folks. It is not a problem exclusive to Arizona, just a bigger one.

    8. Bobbie says:

      It isn't right for the federal government of the united states not to hold all men to his actions and enforce the law equally applied. I'm hearing terrible things about terrible stories regarding such cruel and inhumane crimes I never thought people in America would bring themselves to. No MAJOR NEWS!? crimes never heard of in this country and NO MAJOR NEWS?? It's outrageous and horrifying what the people of this country are showing themselves to be under this President and in this great country! I pray for Mr. Robert Straite who's story I can't say it's so beneath everything you could think of the worst people on earth.

      For everyone that reads this who doesn't realize, this country was written by men with skin on their bones. The skin color doesn't reflect common civil laws written and in a civil country of free people never should. The government defies humanity to legislate laws based on anything but human principle and that principle is determined by human commonality and that human commonality is derived and taught by the Man from the middle east, Jesus Christ who's followers are from every human origin, every ethnicity and every skin color!! So why is this government refusing laws and changing others to reflect discrimination of race, creed, culture or anything outside of human?! Stop it and stop it now! Jesus is not a man of religion nor did he preach one! So whoever can't bring themselves to comply with these laws, BE GONE FROM THE AMERICAN GOVERNMENT! UNFIT! INTOLERANT! IGNORANT!

    9. recce1 says:

      The one question I can't get conservatives or libertarians to answer is who has the right to determine immigration, the federal government or the states? I realize there's the accepted answer, that it's the federal government's responsibility, but is it correct?

      Consider Article 1 Section 8 Paragraph 4 and the 10th Amendment of the Constitution together for a moment.

      Article 1 Section 8 Paragraph 4 states, "The Congress shall have Power To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States." The 10th Amendment states, "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

      Now unless my dictionary is wrong, the words naturalization and immigration don't mean the same thing even if they're interrelated. Nowhere in the Constitution is Congress given the power to regulate immigration. Or have I missed something?

      So why are conservatives and libertarians so terrified of addressing the issue of who has the right to control immigration? Do they believe that court precedents are sacrosanct even it they're unconstitutional?

    10. Tom says:

      The treachery that is being perpetrated on the nation's people by "our" federal government is approaching that perpetrated by the European despotic regimes during the first half of the twentieth century.

    11. Carol, AZ says:

      This week MX Pres. Calderon announced: "his country has been taken over by Drug Cartels disabling MX to function."
      This week _El Chapo, leader Guzman, in the Sinaloa Cartel in Nuevo Laredo_ Tamaulipas displayed, "14 dismembered bodies from_ rival Zeta memebers."The bodies were also skinned."
      15 more bodies were, "sacked in an abondoned soft drink truck south of Tamaulipas."
      Less than one year ago in San Fernando, "193 bodies located in the second largest mass grave in modern MX history."
      " 331 dead , found in another mass grave in the State of Durango" It was reported that, "most had died from asphyxiation, from being buried alive."
      re. Borderland Beat -Ap 19, 2012.
      Terrorism has taken over MX and the war on our border is being supported by our own Governemnt.
      Border States continue to struggle to control the spill- over violence..All reporting of "terrorism " shut down by mainstream media.

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