Obama can’t stop talking about Arizona law that DOJ hasn’t reviewed yet

posted at 9:00 pm on April 27, 2010 by Allahpundit

Oh, there’s no doubt that the DOJ will challenge the law — the politics demands it, which is one reason why Holder expressed his concern today — but wouldn’t it be keen if the country’s chief law enforcement officer held off on prejudicing public opinion about it until the review is done? In theory (albeit not in political reality), Holder could come back and say that the law is constitutional, which would leave The One … where? Shrugging it off after all but pronouncing it a tool for racial profiling today?

In fact, I don’t think this is even factually correct:

The president said, “you can try to make it really tough on people who look like they, quote, unquote look like illegal immigrants. One of the things that the law says is that local officials are allow to ask somebody who they have a suspicion might be an illegal immigrant for their papers — but you can imagine if you are a Hispanic American in Arizona, your great, great grandparents may have been there before Arizona was even a state. But now suddenly if you don’t have your papers and you took your kid out to get ice cream, you’re going to be harassed, that’s something that could potentially happen.”

One of the open questions about the statute is whether it lets cops detain people solely because they’re suspected of being here illegally or whether some independent suspicion of criminal activity has to exist first, at which point the issue of illegal status can be raised. The lawyer who e-mailed me the other day thinks the “lawful contact” provision means that independent suspicion is required; Byron York reads the statute the same way. Assuming that reading is correct, then no, cops can’t pull you aside if you’re on your way to get ice cream with your kid just because they think you might be illegal. Or at least, they can’t do so lawfully: If they abuse their power then the state will pay, both literally and figuratively. And given the publicity this thing is getting, there’ll be no shortage of lawyers eager to make them do so.

I have no problem with lefties — or righties — noting the potential problems in the bill, but given the hysteria swirling around it and the size of Obama’s megaphone, a little bit of that “first-class temperament” we’ve heard so much about would have gone a long way here. Nothing fancy required; a simple “let me hold off on commenting until the Department of Justice weighs in” would have been dandy. But then, now that we’re in midterms mode, The One needs enemies to beat on. How nice that Arizona could help him out. Skip ahead to 4:40 for the relevant clip.

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How can he rally the Dem base in AZ for the 2010 races if it’s been decimated by deportation?

Doorgunner on April 28, 2010 at 7:38 AM

Obama at his post-partisan best! (LOL!!!)

Hey, I’ll be going to Arizona on vacation in the near future. Can’t wait to get there and stimulate their economy (oops, I mean “spread some wealth around”) a little.

dissent555 on April 28, 2010 at 7:57 AM

The “boy” president is such a shadow of a man. The shell of a liberal spewing forth drivel. Interesting that the majority of latinos support being checked for documents according to Rassie poll. How can we support the AZ economy? Let’s do so. Sharpton should be run out of town after they tar (baby) him and feather him.

wepeople on April 28, 2010 at 8:05 AM

KSM? Guilty!
Arizona Law? Bogus!
Cambridge Cop? Stupid!

Haiku Guy on April 28, 2010 at 8:10 AM

I’m thinking the jug-eared excremental expulsion would rather have had a chance to pack the Supreme Court a bit more before tackling an issue like this, but you have to fight with the left-wing activist justices you have, not the left-wing activist justices you wish you had.

SKYFOX on April 28, 2010 at 8:34 AM

Wow, sorry I missed all that.

Question for crr6 and Proud Rino — did you guys weigh in on the California emissions standards controversy (Bush EPA Administrator Johnson denying CA and 16 other states their own CO2 standard back in December 2007)?

DrSteve on April 28, 2010 at 8:40 AM

Arizona simply did what it had to do because the federal government wouldn’t do it’s job.

It’s like cops watching criminals break into your home every day, doing nothing about it even though you call them constantly. One day you take matters into your own hands because the cops refuse to do anything and they arrest you, not the criminals.

darwin on April 28, 2010 at 8:44 AM

But now suddenly if you don’t have your papers and you took your kid out to get ice cream, you’re going to be harassed, that’s something that could potentially happen.”

This from the guy who supported community activism which targeted bank employees and patrons for harassment as they attempted to enter a Chicago bank. The bank’s crime? The institution failed to provide enough home mortgages to unqualified mortgage applicants.

Obama has built an entire career around community based harassment activism. That was his lone qualification prior to becoming Senator for 6 months then running for President.

R Square on April 28, 2010 at 8:50 AM

Arizona is kind and compassive when we compare it with the checkpoints in Mexico. Mexico is much more strict and sever in enforcing laws for Americans to carry Passports and visa’s beyound the 15-20 miles near the border.

seven on April 28, 2010 at 10:01 AM

But now suddenly if you don’t have your papers and you took your kid out to get ice cream, you’re going to be harassed,


So if you take your kids out for ice cream, and then suddenly have an urge to urinate on the sidewalk calling attention to yourself, your gonna get harassed!!!!!

So if you take your kids out for ice cream, and it’s noon when kids are in school and employed parents are at work, and you look like you just got out of the trunk of a car, you’re gonna get harassed!!!!!

olesparkie on April 28, 2010 at 10:07 AM

but you can imagine if you are a Hispanic American in Arizona, your great, great grandparents may have been there before Arizona was even a state.

Wow just wow… This is exactly what younger Mexican citizens are taught. They believe they have a right to cross our boarders however they like because they “at one time” they were here first. Thats part of LaRaza’s mantra to take back the southwest from the Gringo invaders. Serious, this mind set is a huge part of the problem.

Badbrucskie on April 28, 2010 at 10:40 AM

Whoa. i followed the hyperlink on your tag-name and it leads to a Marine with an eyepatch. Dude!

Marine+eyepatch=awesomely awesome.

Rightwingguy on April 27, 2010 at 9:35 PM

The awesome thing is he is going to be my next congressman if I have anything to do with it. He is a humble guy, even after spending hours with him I had to do some searching to find the whole story, he does not go into it during speeches and talks. Awarded the Silver Star, and never even mentions it.
You know why he has that eyepatch? Stopped an RPG with his HEAD!
I can’t wait to see Pelosi try and shut this patriot down…

JusDreamin on April 28, 2010 at 10:54 AM

So, when you leave your home….are you relatively sure it will be safe?


See…….people in Arizona don’t have that same feeling, so they are doing what the federal government will not.

They feel it will be safe?

They are protecting their home.
So, what I am trying to say so nicely is….unless you live close to the murder capital of the world, Juarez, Mexico, you should shut your mealy mouth and let Arizona and the border states worry about it.

So only Arizonans, New Mexicans, Californians, and Texans should be able to comment? I’m a Californian, so I’m therefore permitted. You are?

If you do live near the border with Mexico and you’re not worried…..you’re an idiot and you most likely have to use post it notes to remind yourself to breathe.

HornetSting on April 27, 2010 at 9:34 PM

I worry less about the guys over at the Home Depot than I do the druggies in West Hollywood.

So I get it — I’m a mealy mouthed idiot in your lights. That’s OK — if it gets bad I’ll just reach down and pull you off of my ankle.

unclesmrgol on April 28, 2010 at 3:11 PM

Dare we say it, these people lashing out at Az are displaying violent anti-government sentiments...including the reader of the teleprompter of the free world.

joeindc44 on April 28, 2010 at 4:11 PM

Let’s start with this: The Spaniards are the ones that caused the problem in the first place. The Indians were there first and had constant struggles with Mexicans invading their territory. Then there was this thing called The Gadsden Purchase:

And in closing, guess whose laws these are:

1. If you migrate to this country, you must speak the native language

2. You have to be a professional or an investor. No unskilled workers

3. There will be no special bilingual programs in the schools, no special
ballots for elections, all government business will be conducted in our

4. Foreigners will NOT have the right to vote no matter how long they are

5 Foreigners will NEVER be able to hold political office.

6. Foreigners will not be a burden to the taxpayers. No welfare, no food
stamps, no health care, or other government assistance programs.

7. Foreigners can invest in this country, but it must be an amount equal
to 40,000 times the daily minimum wage.

8. If foreigners do come and want to buy land that will be okay, BUT
options will be restricted. You are not allowed waterfront property. That
is reserved for citizens naturally born into this country.

9. Foreigners may not protest; no demonstrations, no waving a foreign
flag, no political organizing, no bad-mouthing our president or his
policies, if you do you will be sent home.

10. If you do come to this country illegally, you will be hunted down and
sent straight to jail.

LarryG on April 28, 2010 at 4:21 PM

A lawful contact can either be police initiated contact can either be consentual, e.g. a police officer walking up to a person and just start talking and if the person remains there and answers questions, that is a legal contact. It can also be a Terry Stop, Terry v. Ohio, where the officer detains someone as part of an investigation based on reasonable suspicion (articulable facts that support that a crime has been, is being, or will be commited). So in a consentual contact an officer can just walk up to someone and start talking to him, question him, and ask for identification, but if the person does not object and the officer does not hold the person there unwillingly, once the person provides answers that show that person is here illegally, e.g. no ID, foreign ID, no English, etc. the officer can then take action under the law. The important part is that in a consentual encounter an officer does not need any level of suspicion to initiate contact, but the person being contacted has to know their right to stop the questioning.

federale86 on April 28, 2010 at 4:37 PM