The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision upholding a key part of Arizona’s crackdown on illegal immigrants on Monday is “a great step” toward securing the nation’s borders and shows that the state is “tired of being a victim,” Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar told Newsmax.TV.
“I’m very proud of Arizona as being a leader. They’re tired of being a victim,” Gosar said in an exclusive interview on Monday. “We have a serious problem in this country, and that is securing this country and making sure that the rule of law’s upheld. And I applaud Arizona in regards to this.
“This is another tool in the toolbox that allows us to work and uphold that rule of law — and what it also shows is the failure of the federal government to pony up and do its part in securing our country and securing our borders.”
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Gosar, a Republican member of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said, “this is a great step,” adding that what Arizona constituents really sought was “having a federal government doing work with the states instead of dictating to the states.”
In its decision, the nation’s high court rejected the Obama administration’s position that only the U.S. government should enforce immigration laws in the United States.
The justices, in an opinion by Justice Anthony Kennedy, unanimously upheld the Arizona’s law's most controversial aspect, requiring police officers to check the immigration status of people they stop.
But the court threw out three other provisions that it said went too far in intruding on federal law, including one that makes it a crime for illegal immigrants to work and another that requires them to carry their documents.
Gosar said he expects other states to follow Arizona’s example.
“I suspect they will,” the first-term congressman said. “And, like I said, Arizona was tired of being a victim of the scenario — and we needed to make sure that the rest of America understood the plight that we’re under.”
Gosar attacked President Barack Obama’s recent decision to not prosecute certain groups of immigrants and said the Supreme Court’s ruling will put the nation on the road to comprehensive immigration reform.
“I find the president’s actions despicable,” he said. “Define the Constitution. It’s supposed to be the duty of Congress to be working with that. It, once again, shows the lack of leadership that this president has in working with leaders across the board, across the states, in truly defining a policy of immigration that actually works.”
Gosar added, however, that the ruling “actually shows that law enforcement has the right and the due diligence to have to ask whether you’re in this country the right way or the wrong way, and what your status is . . . That gives us a great start for that discussion.
“Is it finalized?” the Congressman asked. “Absolutely not. We’re going to be refining this for some time, and I would applaud Congress — as well as a president that wants to work with Congress — to roll up their sleeves and get to work.”
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