Arizona’s Immigration Law: Well-Intentioned But Meaningless

When it comes to stopping illegal immigration, where is the common sense?

Oh the hypocrisy.

Ever since Arizona passed its controversial law allowing police to check a suspect’s immigration status, the federal government had been intimating that it would file suit to stop the measure.

Which it finally did.  (Although, in a moment of utter embarrassment, Attorney General Eric Holder testified of his intention to file suit despite his admission that he’d NEVER READ the 10-page Arizona law!)

And the results of the lawsuit?  Wholly predictable. [SIGNUP]

The Right is furious, the Left satiated, and, as always, common sense people are still out in the cold.

Fact is, the Arizona law, signed by a Republican governor and a red-meat issue to the GOP base, is 100 percent meaningless. Beyond providing fiery agenda-driven rhetoric — for both sides — it’s just the latest futile attempt to solve America’s out-of-control illegal invader problem.

Why the hypocrisy? Because instead of focusing on the real issues, like building a border wall and cracking down on employers who hire illegals, the Administration is trying to score political points by hoping the Republican position alienates Latino voters.

If Obama and the Congress were really concerned about reigning in a state for doing its own thing — against the wishes of the federal government — perhaps a better lawsuit would be one against those who are in flagrant violation of federation immigration law. After all, these states are the biggest obstacle to sound immigration policy.

New Mexico would be a good start.

* * *

After we get through the white noise of Arizona’s law being one that harasses the good illegals who have broken America’s laws to get here, or conversely, that such a measure is mandatory to protect our citizens from the invaders, it would be nice to stop and actually ask the most basic question:

How, exactly, are the police supposed to check the immigration status of people they suspect are in the country illegally? What document proving citizenship will they be seeking?

There is no national ID card, and probably about six people nationwide even know where their Social Security card is, so, for the most part, that leaves the driver’s license.

Granted, not everyone drives, but it would be a good starting place.

Well, except for one small thing.

Several states still issue drivers licenses to illegal invaders.  States like….New Mexico, which just so happens to border Arizona.

(This practice does not comply with Federal Real ID Act requirements.  The act mandates that, in order for a license to be recognized by the U.S. Government, states may issue licenses only after determining “proof of identity and lawful status of an applicant” and “verification of the source documents provided by an applicant.”)

So when Juan Valdez is pulled over for a traffic stop on suspicion that he is an illegal, he will be required to prove his status as a citizen or legal immigrant.

As he whips out his license from New Mexico, Utah or Washington, or any of the eight other states that until recently issued licenses to known illegals, along with car insurance (because you can’t get car insurance without a license), a sly smile will creep across his face. There will be no deportation this night.  God Bless America!

Of course, it doesn’t stop with licenses. What about school identification cards, since American taxpayers are educating known illegals to the tune of billions a year?  And not just high school, but college, since many states offer in-state tuition rates to undocumented students?

Or the work ID cards issued by unscrupulous businessmen looking for cheap labor?  The list goes on…

Bottom line: Arizona’s law sounds good and gives people a (false) sense of security, but in reality, it changes nothing.

Why the foot dragging on real reform?  It’s simple.

Too many Republicans are in bed with Big Business, which wants cheap labor, and too many Democrats put politics ahead of national security because they see illegals voting their way.  And make no mistake: illegal invaders are voting in ever-growing numbers. The problem of illegals’ voting has become so acute that they could, in fact, be determining congressional and even presidential elections, especially in those states with razor thin electoral margins — like Arizona and New Mexico.

So what is the answer?

That too, is simple, but it’s just not easy.  It all comes down to political will. As always, a small dose of common sense goes a long way:

1)   Here’s a novel idea: Actually build the border wall. If built correctly, it will stop darn near all invaders — who number over 500,000 per year — yet the southern border remains as vulnerable as ever.  And not just to illegals, but terrorists who could be harboring nuclear and biological weapons — or just a pilot’s license.  (Kind of like that guy Mohammad Atta and 12 other September 11 highjackers who had state-issued licenses.)

In 2006, legislation was signed into law for a special double-layer fence along 700 miles of the most heavily violated border.  Four years later, 34 miles have been built.  Given the millions out of work and trillions spent on government stimulus, how is this possible?  I’d say make the illegals build the wall before kicking them out, but since they’re already stealing jobs from Americans, that just wouldn’t be right.

2)   Put employers who knowingly hire illegals out of business — and in jail. Deliberately accommodating illegals is a national security risk, and cannot be tolerated under any circumstances.  And here’s an added bonus: tough enforcement will reduce demand for cheap (slave) labor, thereby decreasing supply — i.e., illegals — at the border.

3)   Since the rate of criminal recidivism among illegals is seven — that is, the government is knowingly placing illegals back on the street who have committed an average of seven crimes — let’s try something called deportation. Instead, we are being dictated to by third-world rat-hole countries that don’t want their own criminals back and refuse to take them.  And they still receive foreign aid.  There was a Senate bill introduced to stop this insane practice, but it died. Go figure.

4)   Consult the dictionary.  Last time I checked, “illegal” means “breaking the law.” So when the government — local, state or federal — knowingly accommodates illegal invaders for any reason, they are, by definition, breaking the law.

That means no more licenses, jobs, college education, school tuition, or legal rights.  And no amnesty.  Rewarding people who break the law — and slapping the face of those who have toiled so hard doing it the right way — is the epitome of un-Americanism.

It’s time Americans band together to demand sensible immigration policy.  We are the most generous nation on Earth, but will only be able to continue that good work if our economic and physical security is no longer jeopardized.

Stopping the invading hordes — just like Mexico does on its southern border — while maintaining our national identity  as the most welcoming country in the world, needs to be our first priority.

Chris Freind is an independent columnist and investigative reporter who operates his own news bureau, Readers of his column, “Freindly Fire,” hail from six continents, thirty countries and all fifty states. His work has been referenced in numerous publications including The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, foreign newspapers, and in Dick Morris’ recent bestseller “Catastrophe.” Freind also serves as a weekly guest commentator on the Philadelphia-area talk radio show, Political Talk (WCHE 1520), and makes numerous other television and radio appearances.  He can be reached at