Making the only decision possible and feeling a little frustrated over it:
The United States Supreme Court’s ruling striking down Arizona’s immigration law as unconstitutional means portions of Indiana’s immigration law dealing with warrantless arrests cannot be defended, Attorney General Greg Zoeller said today in a legal brief filed in federal court.
Zoeller noted that the Supreme Court’s ruling in the Arizona v. U.S. case makes it clear that state laws authorizing local law enforcement officers to make warrantless arrests of people for immigration violations are unconstitutional. Portions of Senate Enrolled Act 590, Indiana’s immigration law that is now under legal challenge, are preempted, or overridden, by federal law, Zoeller said.
“The Supreme Court made clear that immigration enforcement is a federal government responsibility. States are frustrated by the unwillingness of the executive branch to enforce current immigration laws and inability of Congress to make reforms. As Indiana’s Attorney General, I had an obligation to defend this Indiana statute passed prior to the recent Arizona decision, but I have sworn to uphold the Constitution and my legal conclusion now is that certain portions of the state law cannot stand,” Zoeller said.
It's, uhm, supremely ironic that Indiana can't eforce its law because the federal government won't enforce its law. Immigration is clearly a federal prerogative, so if it chooses not to enforce the law, the state is powerless to do anything, either. Game, set and match.
At least Zoeller cares about minor details like constitutionality. The Obama administration makes such a habit of ignoring laws it doesn't like that the Constitution is largely beside the point.