July 24, 2010
PHOENIX ” A federal judge pushed back Thursday against a contention by the Obama Justice Department that a tough new Arizona immigration law set to take effect next week would cause “irreparable harm¯ and intrude into federal immigration enforcement.
“Why can’t Arizona be as inhospitable as they wish to people who have entered or remained in the United States?¯ U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton asked in a pointed exchange with Deputy Solicitor General Edwin S. Kneedler. Her comment came during a rare federal court hearing in the Justice Department’s lawsuit against Arizona and Gov. Jan Brewer (R).
Bolton, a Democratic appointee, also questioned a core part of the Justice Department’s argument that she should declare the law unconstitutional: that it is “preempted¯ by federal law because immigration enforcement is an exclusive federal prerogative.