Going fishing for Lawsuits

Posted: September 13, 2010 in Delusional in AZ, Illegal Immigration

The movement in Arizona to challenge birthright citizenship is moving full steam ahead apparently.  State Reps. Pearce and Kavanagh, both recent sponsors of the now infamous SB1070, are planning on sponsoring a new bill in January 2011 that will call for the modification of birth certificates. Specifically the new bill would require that the children of illegal immigrants be noted as such on their birth certificates.

Why would they want to simply label the children of illegal immigrants and not go “whole hog” and ban them entirely–which would take the repeal of the 14th Amendment?  Rep. Pearce has already stated that if he had his way he would deny a birth certificate to anyone not born of legal residents.  The reality is, that repealing the 14th Amendment is not likely to happen in spite of the recent anti-illegal immigration fervor.  The bar for repealing any Constitutional Amendment is set so high that we can rest assured that conserva-nuts like Pearce and Kavanagh have no chance of changing the law taking this route.  So they’re going to try to get the issues at the heart of the 14th Amendment in front of the Supreme Court via another route….by purposefully denying equal protection to the children of illegal immigrants.  This new bill will be a big “nanny nanny boo boo, I double dog dare you to step over this line” to the Federal Government.  Here’s why…..

Technically, the production of birth certificates is within the state’s purview, but that’s not the problem.  The real issue is why such a label would be applied.  In this case both the Representatives seem open about wishing to separate out those who are born of legal residents versus non-legal residents and therefore use that status to distribute and apportion services.  By creating a separate class of citizens that will purposefully be treated different from other citizens, the state would be openly defying the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. 

The Feds will either have to ignore the law and allow the discrimination to continue–an unacceptable course of action from any perspective.  Or they will have to sue the State of Arizona, eventually forcing the issue all the way up the food chain to the Supreme Court.  Once there, conserva-nuts hope that the currently conservative dominated Court will do what the frothing masses cannot…..modify the meaning of the 14th Amendment.

The irony is rich on so many levels.  First, dontcha just love it when conservatives become “judicial activists” for their pet issues.  After complaining for decades about a liberal court and supposed rampant re-interpretation of the Constitution, conservatives are now perfectly comfortable with asking the Court to interpret the Constitution to fit their social issue agenda.  Second, since they can’t convince enough Americans to repeal the 14th Amendment to meet that social agenda, they’ll just ignore the will of the people and go around them.  Third, they’re placing an already bankrupt state fighting several lawsuits regarding SB1070 in an even worse position by forcing the state to answer even more lawsuits.  And all without regard to the fact that the State is drowning in debt and cutting back on basic services. 

I, for one, am sick of my state being used as bait for their larger social agenda.  Too bad the rest of Arizona doesn’t see how they’re being used.

Some articles on the topic:

Arizona Republic


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