Credit to the Tribune for Sunday’s excellent review of the legal issues behind SB 1070. Now let’s examine who wins and who loses in this litigation.
Conservatives will continue massing donations to the Brewer defense fund, claiming that the liberal courts are going to make law, not stand behind laws passed by the Legislature, this not withstanding the Tribune’s review of the case law sustaining the constitutional provision of federal supremacy. “States Rights” nuts will decry federalism. Donations to these organizations will skyrocket. Yet, the courts will sustain both the Constitution and the law developed over the years, striking down most if not all of SB 1070.
So the lawyers hired to defend SB 1070 will do just fine. Sure, they will lose, but their pockets will become handsomely lined while attempting to defend it. Contributors lining these pockets will get even more mobilized behind conservative organizations. Those attorneys challenging the constitutionality of SB 1070 are working on the clock at their various salaried positions. They will be kept busy, but not additionally compensated. In the small community of scholars and lawyers dealing with constitutional law, these challengers of SB 1070 will be able to sustain and perhaps even enhance their reputations, but not by much. In that small community, they are expected to prevail.
Even in defeat of SB 1070, Gov. Jan Brewer will benefit greatly. Buz Mills has already stepped aside. As the case goes up to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and perhaps beyond, Brewer will decry its treatment in the courts and her campaign coffers for future elections will swell. Karl Rove already must be envious of Brewer’s campaign strategist.
By being closely identified with the critics of SB 1070, Attorney General Terry Goddard will suffer defeat. Like Mills, Goddard failed to get behind the bandwagon. With this becoming an even more divisive issue, the American political process will continue to suffer. The can carrying true immigration reform will be kicked even further down the road. Even John McCain, one of several conservative border states politicians who tried to pick this can up, is now distancing himself from it.
What is the smart thing to do? Vote out of office those nuts who dreamed up SB 1070 in the first place and in doing so, get behind comprehensive immigration reform. Remember, the nuts who dreamed up SB 1070 hired an outsider to draft it, someone who had worked on this issue for other states several times before. And as other states follow Arizona’s lead, he will do fine, too. But will you and I do the smart thing by voting out of office these nuts? No. So who really loses? You and I do.
Dale Whiting, Chandler
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