President Obama has taken his cerebral and detached attitude about Constitutional Law to new heights or depths depending on your perspective when he had the Justice Department sue the State of Arizona to block the new Arizona Immigration law.
Besieged by nearly half a million illegal immigrants with rising crime rates from the spillover of the Mexican drug cartel wars over control of drug and illegal immigrant traffic through the state, Arizona was forced to take state action because of the failure by Obama to initiate immigration reform in Congress, a campaign promise to lure Hispanic voters to back his Democratic drive to the presidency.
The lawsuit could cost millions of dollars in legal fees and be a huge waste of resources during the largest budget deficit in history. A series of inept policy, legislative and regulatory initiatives by the Obama administration, often designed to circumvent the powers of Congress or the Judiciary branch, have left people wondering what the president really thinks about states rights and the Constitutional separation of powers.
Arizona officials argue they are overrun by illegal immigrants leading to a spike in the crime rate, including drug trafficking, kidnappings and murders. The state is the major gateway into the US for illegal immigration and about 30 per cent of Arizona's population of 6.6 million are Hispanic, including 460,000 illegal immigrants.
Currently more than 60 per cent of the US population supports Arizona's new immigration law, according to a recent opinion survey. Arizona's two Republican US Senators, John McCain and Jon Kyl, have slammed the lawsuit, saying: "The American people must wonder whether the Obama administration is really committed to securing the border when it sues a state that is simply trying to protect its people by enforcing immigration law."
The suit filed by Attorney General Eric Holder names the state of Arizona as well as Gov. Jan Brewer as defendants. In it, the Justice Department claims the federal government has "preeminent authority" on immigration enforcement and that the Arizona law "disrupts" that balance. It urges the U.S. District Court in Arizona to "preliminarily and permanently" prohibit the state from enforcing the law, which is scheduled to go into effect at the end of the month.
Governor Brewer responded by accusing the Obama administration of a "massive waste of taxpayer funds." "It is wrong that our own federal government is suing the people of Arizona for helping to enforce federal immigration law. As a direct result of failed and inconsistent federal enforcement, Arizona is under attack from violent Mexican drug and immigrant smuggling cartels," she said in a written statement. "Now, Arizona is under attack in federal court from President Obama and his Department of Justice."