Is Arizona’s law working already?

posted at 2:55 pm on July 26, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

If the intent of the Arizona legislature was to get hundreds of thousands of people arrested for immigration violations, then their SB1070 bill for immigration enforcement may never quite deliver.  If the intent was to encourage illegal immigrants to leave Arizona, they may claim success even before the first law-enforcement records check takes place.  Reuters reports that many “undocumented workers” are preparing to leave:

Nicaraguan mother Lorena Aguilar hawks a television set and a few clothes on the baking sidewalk outside her west Phoenix apartment block.

A few paces up the street, her undocumented Mexican neighbor WendiVillasenor touts a kitchen table, some chairs and a few dishes as her family scrambles to get out of Arizona ahead of a looming crackdown on illegal immigrants.

“Everyone is selling up the little they have and leaving,” said Villasenor, 31, who is headed for Pennsylvania. “We have no alternative. They have us cornered.”

The two women are among scores of illegal immigrant families across Phoenix hauling the contents of their homes into the yard this weekend as they rush to sell up and get out before the state law takes effect on Thursday.

There are a couple of lessons to be drawn from this.  First, it doesn’t take much to see some self-enforcement on immigration law. In this case, it doesn’t even require a single act of actual enforcement.  All that is needed is government taking its law-enforcement responsibilities seriously, a lesson that we learned in another context when Rudy Giuliani became mayor of New York City.

Next, it reveals the disingenuous response from Washington DC.  The federal government keeps saying that it lacks the resources to enforce the laws it has, but quite obviously, Arizona has much fewer resources than the Obama administration, and all they had to do was pass a law and make it stick.  If the federal government took its job seriously rather than look to pander to Hispanic voters with its deliberate incompetence on immigration enforcement, the issue would mostly resolve itself with little effort — and the resources remaining would be more than sufficient to deal with those left.

Many of those packing in Arizona are heading back across the border, but some intend to move elsewhere in the US.  Expect more states to start getting tough on immigration enforcement as Arizona’s success becomes more apparent.

Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air



Trackback URL


LA! LA!!


mountainaires on July 26, 2010 at 5:41 PM

Conan on July 26, 2010 at 5:00 PM

Whoa…I’m sorry. I *am* an arrogant gringo. You and I are on the same page, Mr. Conan. I assure you, this article doesn’t depress me. It makes me smile.

gryphon202 on July 26, 2010 at 5:43 PM

Now the administration is going to claim that this law unfairly burdens other states by forcing illegal immigrants to move there.

JamesB on July 26, 2010 at 5:30 PM

Sounds like a job for Commerce Clause Man!

I suggest we count up all the undocumented workers and distribute them evenly amongst the states.

That would be fair, right? Spread that wealth, baby.

BobMbx on July 26, 2010 at 5:45 PM

Scores of illegal immigrant families” are “preparing to leave”. I won’t hold my breath.

KS Rex on July 26, 2010 at 5:55 PM

I wish Arizona would have published a helpful guide to the new law, including comparison guide of “Sanctuary” cities and their respective benefits. Just think of all the positive media coverage Arizona would get for this service to the illegal American community.

deadman on July 26, 2010 at 5:58 PM

Sing to the tune of green acers – Green Acres is an American television series starring Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor.

Los Angeles is the place for me,
Freeloading is how life should be,
arms stretching out so far and wide,
Keep Arizona but give me that Riverside

duna da duntant


duna da duntant

They pay..!

Jan Brewer you’ve caused such strife
Good-by Desert life
Green Acres we are there………..

Badbrucskie on July 26, 2010 at 6:03 PM

The false dichotomy always offered on this subject

What are you going to do, round up 20 million people?

is hereby exposed. We don’t have to round up millions of people. If this policy were enacted nationwide, it would probably cut the number of illegals to less than a tenth what it is now.

Then, as those who don’t self-deport run afoul of the law, and are turned over to La Migra, we’ll gradually get them out without having to do many “roundups”.

The Monster on July 26, 2010 at 6:49 PM

Austin,Texas is eagerly awaiting the new lawn crews and the good citizens of Travis county are just so thrilled at the cost of the services they will provide. Rick has to wait for the legislature to return(it will return,damn it) and there are a bunch of Arizona type proposals ready to go. Rick is smart to hold his fire as messin’ with holder and his minions is somewhat costly.After November or 20 Jan at the latest look out. Operation wetback was a success under Eisenhower.

Col.John Wm. Reed on July 26, 2010 at 7:05 PM

deliberate incompetence

Ed – nice. That is on target.

CWforFreedom on July 26, 2010 at 7:55 PM

Yep. They are in fact leaving. I have driven I 10 from Phx to Tucson several times in the last year. The exodus started with the downturn in the construction and has accelerated with the passing of this law. A common sight is a pickup with the entire family jammed in the cab, all the furniture, bikes, heaped and tied down in the bed, pulling a trailer or another pickup that is stacked even higher. Heading south. We have 3 sisters that have become friends. One headed to LA, one decided to stay and the third is going to her home town about 3 hours up in the hills from Acapulco. With the money she has been sending home, her dad bought some property with a house and some livestock. It is all in her name so she plans to start a business there and then it will be easier to get a visa and come back legally. At least that is her plan.

jbinnout on July 26, 2010 at 8:08 PM


Dandapani on July 26, 2010 at 9:17 PM

paulsur on July 26, 2010 at 3:14 PM

White is not any better. Houston became a sanctuary city under his watch.

meMC on July 26, 2010 at 9:34 PM

Was in AZ last week. Cabby didn’t like the law. Said he’s having to pay a lot more for his landscaping now, because so many landscapers have pulled up stakes and left. Ditto for other services.

That kind of confirms the above, from my vantage point.

rasqual on July 26, 2010 at 9:53 PM

Odd that the administration of “YES WE CAN” is the same administration that says “WE CAN’T FIND THEM!”

Yeah, it’s really hard to find someone WHEN YOU DON’T EVEN LOOK!

Exit question: How many would ‘self-deport’ if we started enforcing the law?

GarandFan on July 26, 2010 at 10:03 PM

They’re all coming to California.
We are so screwed.

1IDVET on July 26, 2010 at 11:15 PM

I’m glad we moved to AZ from Cali 6 years ago, even more so today. Gov. Brewer started her term as just another RINO however, with SB1070, she has changed course and her poll numbers have skyrocketed in approval. She is also after the border towns that teach distorted hispanic studies rather than true American history.

She is making adifference in AZ.

dthorny on July 27, 2010 at 1:08 PM