This morning I published a piece in US News & World Report about the controversy over Arizona’s immigration law and the fight between the federal and state governments. The federal government asserts that Arizona is usurping the exclusive authority of the federal government to enforce immigration law.
To me, what has been curiously missing from the debate is that back in 1996 Congress passed a federal law giving state and local governments (and their law enforcement organizations) the right to enforce immigration law.
On the one hand the federal government is suing Arizona for authorizing local law enforcement to coordinate with federal authorities regarding illegal immigration; on the other hand, the federal government is simultaneously requesting such assistance from local governments.
Below is a brief excerpt. To read the full article, go to: Congress Passed an Arizona-Like Immigration Law in 1996 – Chris Battle (usnews.com)
Back in 1996 it was time to get tough on immigration, and an interesting little law known as 287g was passed. This federal law deemed it appropriate for state and local law enforcement to enforce immigration law.
Want to know what 287g says? Well, just read the law in Arizona. Yes, that law. The one causing protests in the streets of Phoenix, hysteria on cable talk shows and confusion in the courts. The one that empowers state and local law enforcement to enforce immigration law.