ACLU's Anti-SB 1070 Lawsuit; Bud Selig Waffles; Sarah Palin Weighs In; Eric Holder vs. Ted Poe

The ACLU has sent out a media advisory stating that it will formally announce its federal anti-SB 1070 lawsuit on Monday. The ACLU is keeping mum till then, but you can anticipate that the suit will seek to enjoin the law, and hopefully stop it from going into effect before the end of July.

According to the ACLU's press release, the suit will be backed by a coalition of groups, including the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON) and Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC).

The release states that, "Arizona's new law requires police to demand `papers' from people they stop who they suspect are not authorized to be in the U.S. and criminalizes immigrants for failing to carry immigration papers. The unconstitutional law...encourages racial profiling, endangers public safety and betrays American values."

You hear a lot of bunk out there about how Arizona's law "mirrors" federal law. Actually, federal law does not presume that all persons stopped are illegal unless they happen to be carrying certain documents on them. Nor does federal law deal with day laborer/traffic restrictions, or state -- as SB 1070 does -- that "attrition through enforcement" (i.e., driving the brown people out of the U.S.) is public policy.

Moreover, immigration is the purview of the federal government according to the U.S. Constitution. States are not allowed to go around drafting their own immigration statutes.

The law is unconstitutional. The question is, will a federal judge step in and issue an injunction preventing the law from going into effect? Such an action would save Arizona a lot of grief in the short term, and likely lessen the drive for a boycott of the state. Let's hope such an effort is successful.


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Austin, Texas is the latest city to join a boycott of Arizona, adding itself to an ever growing list, which includes Boston, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, and others.

Still, the impact of Austin piling on seems negligible, according to the Austin American Statesman:

"Austin has no contracts with or investments in the state of Arizona, according to memos from city controller Diana Thomas. Forty-eight employees in six city departments, including council offices, Austin Energy and the police department, took 20 business trips to Arizona over the past year, at a cost of $47,908 ."

Where the rubber meets the road is where real dough is involved. Los Angeles, for instance has $58 million in current contracts with Arizona that it's not canceling, despite its much ballyhooed "boycott."

Still, the gradual effect is one of strangling the Arizona beast, as future contracts, travel, and other money flowing into the state from these municipalities will be imperiled.

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Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig has been waffling on the issue of whether or not he'll pull the 2011 All-Star Game from Phoenix. 

During a press conference yesterday, he sidestepped the issue like a ballerina with epilepsy, laying the foundation for an excuse should MLB go forward as planned with the game.

"Apparently all the people around and in minority communities think we're doing OK," said Selig, obtusely. "That's the issue, and that's the answer. I told the clubs today: 'Be proud of what we've done.' They are. We should. And that's our answer. We control our own fate, and we've done very well."

Selig's getting some cover from the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, which along with other business groups, is encouraging Selig not to move the event.

If Selig continues this line, the game will be boycotted by Hispanic baseball fans, by many of MLB's own players and coaches, and by many others opposed to SB 1070. His dithering is setting MLB up for its own little civil war. Expect this drama to get uglier as we draw closer to 2011.

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Tea Party pinup gal Sarah Palin aimed her assault rifle in the general direction of those in the anti-SB 1070 camp by coming to the defense of a girls basketball team from Highland Park High School in Illinois

The team is being prevented from coming to Arizona for a tournament by school administrators for vague reasons having to do with the safety of the players and AZ's new "papers please" legislation.

Caribou Barbie encouraged the "lady hoopsters," as she called them, to "go rogue" -- you know, like in the title of her book -- and get to Sand Land on their own somehow. She also took a shot at the boycott.

"We are going to do all that we can to shed more light on what this political issue is," she told FoxNews. "This Arizona boycott. It's going to hurt everybody in Arizona, including the Hispanic community. And it's not a solution to the problem. The problem is how are we going to secure our borders. Keeping girls off the basketball court has nothing to do with the solution that we need to find!"

Boycott-wise, I could care less if some ladies' b-ball team comes to AZ to play. Of course, if they have to worry about having their docs checked by law enforcement, then they may want to steer clear of the state. I would if I were in their Nikes.

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U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is at least honest. When questioned by nativist Congressman Ted Poe from Texas about SB 1070, Holder admitted that he hadn't read it yet, a blunder right-wingers all over America are having a field day with.

I know Holder is a busy dude, but I have to agree with Poe on this one as much as my stomach turns to do so. It would have taken Holder, what, like 10 minutes to read the law and know it's unconstitutional.  The guy could have read it in the elevator, for cryin' out loud.

Poe, however, is a political prevaricator of renown, and proves so in his statement to Holder, where he informs the Attorney General that the statute is supported by "50 percent of all Hispanics according to the Wall Street Journal/NBC poll done just this week."

Of course, this is a big fat pile of bull. Instead, WSJ reported the following:

"Seven in 10, or 70%, of Hispanic respondents said they are somewhat or strongly opposed to the law, compared with 34% of all respondents in the latest Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll set for release later Wednesday. One thousand people were polled.

"Among Hispanics, 27% are somewhat or strongly supportive of Arizona's law. That compares with 64% of respondents overall."

The whopper that Hispanics support this law overwhelmingly is persistent, despite numerous polls showing otherwise. I've blogged about this previously, but the nativists continue to insist on their own "facts."  

Why do they do this? Because if they could show proof of widespread Hispanic support for SB 1070, they would insulate themselves from charges of racism. The reality is there is a clear ethnic divide on SB 1070, both in Arizona and throughout the U.S. Nativist shibboleths do not change this reality.

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