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Barack Obama Weighs In on SB 1070, Calls Russell Pearce Bill "Misguided"

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President Barack Obama unloaded on Arizona today, blasting state Senator Russell Pearce's bigot bill SB 1070 as "misguided" and irresponsible during a naturalization ceremony in the White House Rose Garden for 24 active-duty service members.

But he didn't let the federal government off the hook. Indeed, he blamed Arizona's legislative actions on federal immigration reform delayed.

"Indeed, our failure to act responsibly at the federal level will only open the door to irresponsibility by others," said the President. "And that includes, for example, the recent efforts in Arizona, which threatened to undermine basic notions of fairness that we cherish as Americans, as well as the trust between police and their communities that is so crucial to keeping us safe.

"In fact, I've instructed members of my administration to closely monitor the situation and examine the civil rights and other implications of this legislation.But if we continue to fail to act at a federal level, we will continue to see misguided efforts opening up around the country."

Governor Jan Brewer is expected to sign the bill today, despite a groundswell of opposition . Last night she spoke before the Hispanic group Chicanos Por La Causa, but she declined to make an announcement on SB 1070, other than to say she would do what is right for Arizona.

Brewer left immediately after her remarks, with the crowd chanting "Veto the bill" as she stomped out.

If she declines to veto the bill, as many expect she will and as KTAR reported last night based on unnamed sources, the new law will go into effect 90 days after the legislature adjourns. 

Already civil rights groups such as the Arizona ACLU and MALDEF, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, are preparing legal challenges. It's expected these groups will seek an injunction to stop the law's implementation. 

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