The filing is expected to include declarations from other U.S. agencies saying that the Arizona law would place a undue burden on their ability to enforce immigration laws nationwide, because Arizona police are expected to refer so many illegal immigrants to federal authorities.
Let's think about that. What the government is really saying here is this: we have laws but we are either unable or unwilling to enforce them, so Arizona needs to back off and stop insisting we live up to the laws we've passed, because the laws we've passed create an undue burden. The rule of law is one thing, but bureaucratic comfort levels are quite another, especially when the party in power relies on bureaucrats as one of its most loyal constituencies.
I'm a conservative, but I tend to take a libertarian view on many issues. In my view, one of the largest problems of a leviathan government is this: it tends to pass laws it cannot, or will not, enforce. When the government does these things, respect for the edifice of law erodes over time. Apparently the immigration laws we have on the books are part of that problem. It's long since past time that our betters in Washington come clean -- either they want to protect the border, or they don't. It would appear that this administration doesn't want to protect the border. The Feds want to stop Arizona from doing anything about enforcing the border, either.
Really, what we need to decide is this: either we enforce immigration law as currently written and allocate the resources necessary to do it, or we should change our public stance and say, hey, we're happy to have you in El Norte -- come on in, amigos! If that's our view, we ought to stop pretending the laws on the books matter and set out to repeal them.
Arizona's law is all about clarifying roles and responsibilities. At least for this administration, the answer is now clear -- they don't really want to enforce the laws. Good to know. Now the voters can decide whether or not that stance is acceptable.
UPDATE: a member of Arizona congressional delegation, also a member of the President's party, weighs in.
UPDATE TWO: That nasty racist Arizona law approach is spreading. Well, that would be true except for the little matter that Rhode Island has been reporting people to ICE for years. I'm beginning to wonder why Eric Holder isn't coming down hard on those racists in Providence....