Does The Administration Have A Case Against Arizona?

Lots of good reading over at NRO today. Heather Mac Donald has contributed a thoughtful analysis of the legal tug-of-war between Arizona and the DOJ over S.B. 1070 and the question of “preemption”. What does the existing body of case law indicate: does “preemption doctrine” apply only to statutes, or can it be extended to cover enforcement as well?

We read:

Applied to the immigration field, the question becomes: If the president decides not to enforce the immigration laws against this particular illegal alien or even against most illegal aliens, are the states free to prosecute those same aliens under a bootstrap state version of federal law? The answer to me is not obvious. The prospect of 50 different prosecutorial regimes for immigration violations is not unproblematic. As much as I believe that immigration law should be enforced much more vigorously than it currently is, such a piecemeal system of state-level immigration regimes could arguably conflict with the federal interest in speaking with a single, national voice when it comes to immigration matters.

Read the rest here.

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