U.S. Sen. David Vitter today expressed disappointment with most of the Supreme Court's ruling on the Arizona immigration law. Vitter did applaud the court's upholding of the portion of the law that allows police offers to check immigration status.
"All the Arizona law tried to do was fill the void that the federal government has created by neglecting its duty and letting illegal immigration get completely out of control," Vitter said. "The federal government should be working with Arizona to solve the problem, not taking it to court. But for those of us who believe our focus should be actively enforcing the federal laws already on the books, the court's decision to uphold Arizona's ability to check immigration status is a step forward."
Vitter serves as chairman of the U.S. Senate Border Security and Enforcement First Immigration Caucus and has been a vocal supporter of the Arizona immigration law.
In November 2011, Sens. Vitter, Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) offered legislation to prohibit President Obama's administration, including the Department of Justice (DOJ) and other agencies, from participating in lawsuits against South Carolina, Alabama and Arizona over recently passed immigration laws.
In May 2011, Vitter applauded the U.S. Supreme Court ruling to uphold an Arizona law that requires all businesses to check to make sure their employees are in the country legally.
In 2010, Vitter also introduced an amendment that would have prevented the administration from suing with taxpayers' money to block the Arizona law.
The Arizona law would have granted state law enforcement officials the authority to enforce federal immigration laws by allowing them to inquire about the immigration status of individuals who are lawfully stopped for other crimes. This mirrors existing federal law and does not empower police officers with any new authority. Vitter's 2010 legislation would have prohibited President Obama's administration, including the Department of Justice and other agencies, from participating in lawsuits seeking to invalidate SB 1070.