Opinion Brief

Is Arizona's immigration law already a success?

Illegal immigrants are reportedly rushing to get out of Arizona before the state's tough new law takes effect. Proof of concept, say supporters

Illegal immigrants are reportedly fleeing Arizona this week, trying to avoid getting caught when the state's tough new immigration law takes effect on Thursday, making it a crime to be in the state without proper papers and requiring police to investigate suspected violators. Does the exodus mean that the law is already working, or that it's creating the injustices and chaos that critics feared? (Watch a local report about fleeing immigrants)

This proves the government can stop illegal immigration if it tries: If Arizona lawmakers were aiming to "encourage illegal immigrants to leave Arizona," says Ed Morrissey in Hot Air, "they may claim success even before the first law-enforcement records check takes place." This just proves that if the Obama administration "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."
"Is Arizona's law working already?"

Creating fear of discrimination is nothing to celebrate: Of course people are fleeing Arizona and moving to more friendly states, says Randall Amster in The Huffington Post. With their unnecessarily "harsh" law, the state's lawmakers have told "nonwhites that they are unwelcome." Immigrants from neighboring Mexico and elsewhere, legal and illegal, know they'll soon be the victims of racial profiling.
"Phoenix, we have a problem ..."

Let's not overstate the law's effects: Yes, "immigrants are fleeing state," says Eve Conant in Newsweek. But there are other factors at play, including beefed up federal border enforcement and the tougher U.S. job market. Gov. Jan Brewer and the law's other proponents should consider the big picture before claiming credit for "clearing Arizona of illegal immigrants."
"Immigrants flee Arizona as faith groups and lawyers descend"

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