The president believes that enforcing the nation’s immigration laws is important, even though his Justice Department is suing the state of Arizona for passing a state law to do just that.
The confirmation came today from presidential spokesman Jay Carney during his daily White House news briefing when WND correspondent Les Kinsolving raised the issue.
Kinsolving: Both the Washington Post and the Washington Times report the arrest of 130 illegal aliens in Virginia this week. Is the president gratified or sorry?
Carney: I have no response because I haven’t spoken to him about those arrests. I would tell you that the president believes that it is very important to enforce our immigration laws. But that’s my response.
Kinsolving: Can I just follow one – just one? (Laughter.) Does the president believe that illegal aliens who repeat their invading after being [deported] and are – who commit additional crimes should just continue being sent back? Or should they be imprisoned?
Carney: Lester, I’m not even sure I understand your question. But I will just refer you to what I said, which is …
Kinsolving: What if they repeat their crimes? If they’re sent back and then they go back again and repeat their crimes, does he think they should just be sent back or imprisoned?
Carney: Look, the president is committed to enforcement of our immigration laws.
Carney’s statements shed new light on the dispute between Obama’s attorney general, Eric Holder, and the state of Arizona, which last year adopted SB 1070, which would have allowed state law enforcement officers to enforce national immigration restrictions.
Holder sued Arizona almost before the ink was dry on Gov. Jan Brewer’s signature on the law, and the dispute already has been elevated to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Brewer announced just a few weeks ago that Arizona will file a countersuit against the federal government, claiming that the federal agencies responsible have failed to enforce the nation’s immigration laws.
She said the federal government “has failed to protect the citizens of Arizona,” and she had no other choice but to file the legal action.
She said the state now “continually” is dealing with drug cartels and the crime they generate.
“It’s just untolerable,” she said.
When Obama took Arizona’s effort to protect its own citizens to court, a federal judge blocked key sections of the state law.
“It’s outrageous the United States Department of Justice sued the people of Arizona to stop Senate Bill 1070,” Brewer said. “Our message for the federal government is very simple – use federal resources to combat the cartels who are breaking the federal law.”
She explained the claims will include that the Obama administration has refused to enforce immigration laws enacted by Congress.
During his recent vacation through Latin America, Obama said El Salvador, a source of one of the largest illegal alien groups to enter the U.S., should develop economic incentives for its citizens to stay home, the New York Times reported.
He also took the opportunity to advocate, again, for a “comprehensive overhaul” of America’s immigration laws and said that would include citizenship for the millions of illegal aliens who broke the U.S. law to enter the nation.
Noting that the Republican majority in the U.S. House likely wouldn’t give him exactly what he wanted, he said, “The politics of this are difficult, but ultimately I am confident that we are going to get it done.”
Even while the Arizona law is being argued in court – it likely will rise to the U.S. Supreme Court – ABC News is reporting that dozens of other states are working on similar laws.
“The mere fact that Arizona law has sprung up in over 24 other states within a few months of passage, I believe, is historic,” William Gheen, president Americans for Legal Immigration, told ABC.
“We are going to pass more immigration enforcement legislation in the states in 2011 than any year prior. And what we don’t get done in 2011 we will get done in 2012,” he said.
WND also reported on documentation revealing that hundreds of illegal aliens from terror-linked nations such as Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Pakistan, Iran and Syria have been nabbed by the U.S. Border Patrol sneaking illegally into the country.
The terror-linked illegals were among the 463,382 individuals apprehended being smuggled – or smuggling others – across the U.S. borders last year according to federal documents obtained recently by Judicial Watch.
“We should not be surprised if terrorists take advantage of our porous borders in light of the Obama administration’s lax approach to border security,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “When you have an administration that pushes illegal alien amnesty, permits illegal alien sanctuary policies, and attacks states like Arizona for seeking to enforce the rule of law, it sends a signal to our enemies to cross the border illegally and to do their worst.”
Fitton said the Obama administration “continues to allow our borders to spiral out of control.”
“These numbers are simply astonishing,” he said. “Our country cannot secure our borders soon enough!”
WND also reported that the Department of Justice documents under Obama’s command worked hand-in-hand with the American Civil Liberties Union to attack Arizona over its tough new immigration law.
It was May 17, 2010 when the ACLU, and other groups including the National Immigration Law Center, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and National Day Laborer Organizing Network, filed a class action lawsuit against Arizona over its legislature’s attempt to protect its citizens and its jobs from illegal aliens.
“On July 6, 2010, the Obama DOJ filed a lawsuit of its own, which has been described by Congressman Peter King, R-N.Y., as a ‘cut and paste’ version of the ACLU lawsuit,” Judicial Watch reported.
WND previously reported when Judicial Watch asked that the provisions suspended by the judge be reinstated:
- Section 2(B) [reasonable attempt to determine a person’s immigration status] “imposes no ‘new’ burden on lawfully present aliens because Arizona law enforcement officials have the discretion to inquire about a person’s immigration status regardless of Section 2(B). Section 2(B) also does not place any undue burden on federal resources because Congress has mandated that the federal government respond to requests from state and local law enforcement officers about persons’ immigration status.”
- Section 3 [willful failure to complete or carry an alien registration document] “does not regulate the conditions under which a lawfully present alien may remain in the country. Instead, Section 3 utilizes ordinary state police powers to create criminal penalties for the failure to comply with a federal registration scheme.”
- Invoking Arizona’s broad authority to regulate employment under its police powers, Section 5 [unlawful employment of illegal aliens] “seeks to strengthen Arizona’s economy by protecting the state’s fiscal interests and lawfully resident labor force from the harmful effects resulting from the employment of unlawfully present aliens.”
- Section 6 [warrantless arrest] “does not grant Arizona law enforcement officers the authority to determine whether an individual has committed a public offense that makes him removable. Section 6 only authorizes Arizona law enforcement officers to make a warrantless arrest of an individual who has already been determined to have committed a public offense that makes him removable.”
Fitton said Arizona lawmakers “specifically crafted” the law “to be entirely consistent with federal law.”
He earlier said, “The district court jumped the gun by invalidating components of the law on a purely speculative basis. It is shameful that the Obama administration has chosen to mount a legal assault against the state of Arizona for simply trying to protect its citizens.”
It was U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton who struck the state law’s provisions, drawing approval from both the U.S. and Mexican governments.
“This is a matter of America’s sovereignty and security, and every patriotic American must get involved,” said Richard Thompson, president of the Thomas More Law Center.
The organization, a national, public-interest law firm in Michigan, filed a brief in support of Arizona’s law.
“If we can’t defend our borders from attack by illegal immigrants, in time we will lose our country,” Thompson said. “What confidence should we have in an attorney general who, without even reading the law, accused Arizona of racial profiling? Patriotic Americans must show they stand with Arizona in this matter.”