Friday, July 30, 2010
1. What will happen in the event Roe v. Wade (the foundational case law upholding a woman's right to an abortion under most circumstances) is overturned?
2. What on Earth does #1, above, have to do with Arizona's attempt to pass tougher illegal immigration laws?
If Roe v. Wade is struck down by a conservative Supreme Court, will abortion services in every state simply cease to exist? Most legal experts don't believe so. The famous 1972 legal decision simply set forth circumstances under which a state may not interfere with a woman's decision to terminate a fetus she's carrying. In reality, some states in the Bible Belt would like to outlaw abortion under most circumstances, and many, along the coasts, would not seriously consider passing such legislation.
In a post-Roe U.S., there would likely be "abortion states" and "no abortion states." A young woman residing in Louisiana or the Dakotas might find herself traveling to California or New York to seek the medical service she feels is in her best interests.
The last two paragraphs answer Question One. The answer to Question Two is, after Arizona's legal battles over SB 1070 are concluded, we might have a very similar situation to the one described above. There will be "sanctuary" or "illegal alien" states, and there will be "rule of law" or "no illegal alien" states.
The Department of Justice's attorneys attempted to enjoin all the illegal immigration fighting legislation contained in SB 1070. They didn't succeed. Certainly, key parts were temporarily suspended. Indeed, those injunctions may become permanent upon further judicial review. Several key provisions were left standing, however and, as this is being written, Maricopa County sweeps for illegal aliens are taking place. Further, in anticipation of immigration law enforcement legislation being enacted, tens of thousands of the undocumented, along with their family members, have fled Arizona for friendlier terrain.
The bottom line is that states can engage in some fashion of immigration law enforcement. No knowledgeable party has represented otherwise. 287(g) employee checks, day laborer restriction regulations, and a host of other programs or currently existing laws are available to states that want to deter the influx of the marginally educated and financially needy population that is unlawfully setting up house in their cities and villages.
In fact, the SB 1070 litigation is likely to better clarify what the limits are regarding the federal government's ability to prevent states from performing the immigration enforcement-related duties it has avoided. Nonetheless, some of SB 1070 will remain standing, and with it, the ability to encourage illegal aliens to flee.
States already considering Arizona-type laws (Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Oklahoma ...) will have a blueprint after the Supreme Court has spoken, and may decide to follow suit. And certainly, there are illegal alien saturated locations in the United States, such as California, New York and New Mexico, that are currently far too politically liberal to anticipate that they are the next locations where an "Arizona uprising" is likely to unfold.
Will most illegal aliens in "rule of law" states head home? Probably not. Particularly when the economy improves. They're likely to pack up for Los Angeles, Houston, Chicago and other locations with entrenched sanctuary policies.
In short, the illegal alien saturated states will become more so, and the less hospitable will reap much smaller and quieter populations of those "living in the shadows." There'll essentially be Illegal Alien States and Non-Illegal Alien States.
Will California, Illinois and Texas exploit their abundant "resource" and become reborn manufacturing centers, fueled by sub-minimum wage laborers? Will Arizona, Pennsylvania and Ohio flourish with improved public schools and greatly reduced tax burdens. Hold on to your hats. There's a reasonable chance we'll find out before the last of the baby-boomer generation reaches retirement age.