California to Supreme Court: Attrition Will Work

By Jon Feere, March 29, 2012

Ten states have joined California in filing an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court objecting to what they allege are unconstitutional provisions of Arizona's S.B. 1070, the "Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act". The 10 other states are New York, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Among other things, California et al. argue that Arizona's law has "interstate effects", namely that it would drive illegal immigrants out of Arizona and into other states. As explained in the brief:

Regardless of whether other states welcome or object to the migration of undocumented immigrants, S.B. 1070's effect is to deter immigrants from residing in Arizona; Arizona cannot implement a policy that removes immigrants from the United States. As a result, Arizona's unilateral effort to impose its own removal policy will inevitably have interstate effects. . . .

Because Arizona cannot compel the federal government to remove undocumented residents, S.B. 1070's provisions have the primary effect of redirecting undocumented immigrants to other States.

In other words, these states believe that the attrition policy works.

Of course, the brief also points out that states have the authority to act as they see fit:

States have broad authority to enact and enforce laws affecting all persons within their borders, including documented and undocumented immigrants, in the manner that best accommodates local concerns.

This is true. And if these other states "object to the migration" of illegal aliens into their jurisdictions, perhaps it's time to craft legislation similar to Arizona's. This will be the natural legacy of S.B. 1070 as other state legislatures begin to discover that it is in their interest to deter illegal immigration. Over time, sanctuary states will find it increasingly difficult to justify their policies. The attrition policy will necessarily be embraced, state by state, and eventually illegal aliens will have nowhere to go but home.

The brief cites publications from the Center for Immigration Studies, NumbersUSA, and FAIR in describing the attrition strategy for reducing illegal immigration. For additional CIS publications on attrition, click here.