Friday, June 4, 2010

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer and President Obama Meet, Talk Immigration. No Word On Lawsuit

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer met with President Barack Obama at the White House yesterday regarding Arizona's controversial new immigration law. The meeting has been likened by national news outlets to everything from a Cold War summit to a "face-off."

The president has publicly criticized the state law, saying it shows we need comprehensive immigration reform. In addition, Department of Justice officials have met with Arizona officials, indicating the federal goverment may sue the state.

After yesterday's meeting, USA Today reports that Brewer said the president did not reveal whether the Department of Justice will sue Arizona, but she stands by her previous commitment to see any such lawsuit through to the Supreme Court. Fox News says the governor got "few results" from Obama. The Houston Chronicle via the AP says Brewer believes she and Obama will work together to address Arizona's concerns.

Brewer ... says Obama assured her that most of the 1,200 National Guard troops he is sending to the southern border will be coming to her state.

Also, Obama has promised to send White House staff to the state, says Brewer per the Washington Post.

According to the White House, the meeting went well:

The President listened to Governor Brewer’s concerns, and noted that the Administration’s ongoing border protection and security efforts have increased pressure on illegal trafficking organizations through record seizures of illegal weapons and bulk cash transiting from the United States to Mexico, resulted in significant seizures of illegal drugs headed into the United States, lowered the average violent crime statistics in states along the Southwest Border, and reduced illegal immigration into the United States.

Despite the significant improvements, the President acknowledged the understandable frustration that all Americans share about the broken immigration system, and the President and Governor agreed that the lack of action to fix the broken system at the federal level is unacceptable. ... Regarding Arizona law SB1070, the President reiterated his concern with the measure, including that a patchwork of different state immigration regulations around the country would interfere with the federal government’s responsibility to set and enforce immigration policy.

The Republican governor signed SB1070 in late April, and the New York Times reported then:

The law, which proponents and critics alike said was the broadest and strictest immigration measure in generations, would make the failure to carry immigration documents a crime and give the police broad power to detain anyone suspected of being in the country illegally.

The law takes effect July 29. ... Please read full story with links and video at BlogHer.com

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