The core of Eric Holder’s argument against Arizona’s SB 1070 immigration law (oral arguments before the Supreme Court are scheduled for tomorrow) is that the states are preempted from acting in this arena where federal authority is paramount. There’s no dispute that Congress has plenary power over immigration; but there’s also no dispute that Congress has explicitly authorized state and local law enforcement to assist in certain aspects of immigration law enforcement.
So, you’d think those who think Arizona went too far would demand that Congress spell out in greater detail what states can and cannot do — drawing those lines is their job, after all. And yet, today we learn that, as the dead-tree WaPo headline puts it, “Democrats plan fallback in case Ariz. law is upheld.” So, for open-borders legislators, running to the courthouse is Plan A, while actually going through the deliberative process of legislating is Plan B. Because, you know, they might lose if it were put to a vote, and there’s no sense in taking that chance if you don’t have to. That pretty much sums up the governing philosophy of the Left: Only when all else fails should you try democracy. What else should we expect from people who want to abolish the First Amendment?