When the Justice Department first brought a suit against Arizona over its new anti illegal immigration law, Governor Jan Brewer said this.
The irony is that President Obama’s Administration has chosen to sue Arizona for helping to enforce federal immigration law and not sue local governments that have adopted a patchwork of ‘sanctuary’ policies that directly violate federal law. These patchwork local ‘sanctuary’ policies instruct the police not to cooperate with federal immigration officials.
This became a common criticism of the suit. If the government believes that immigration is strictly a federal issue what are we to make of so called sanctuary cities, like Chicago, that refuse to enforce federal law. In fact, sanctuary cities openly flaunt their refusal to follow federal immigration laws. On the other hand, Arizona passed a law that would help the federal government enforce its law.
The administration stalled in responding. Robert Gibbs was asked once during his normal daily White House briefing and he said he get back on it. Now, the Justice Department has issued this statement.
There is a big difference between a state or locality saying they are not going to use their resources to enforce a federal law, as so-called sanctuary cities have done, and a state passing its own immigration policy that actively interferes with federal law. That's what Arizona did in this case.
That statement will be hyperanalyzed as it is totally without logic. In fact, it is sanctuary cities that actively interfere with federal law. Arizona's law mirrors federal statutes. On another note, fifteen states lead by Michigan have joined in the suit in support of Arizona against the feds.