Why Obama Challenged Arizona's Immigration Law

When Arizona's state senate passed SB (Senate Bill) 1070i, the Obama administration immediately sued and enjoined the state from enforcing parts of the bill.  As the issue is argued before the Supreme Court, political questions remain: why did President Obama sue Arizona so quickly, and could the legal action have been politically motivated? 

Clues to the politics of the issue are revealed by what Obama and other Washington Democrats have said regarding their prime mission during Obama's first term.  On October 19, 2011, Senate leader Harry Reid stated: "It's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine[;] it's the public sector where we've lost huge numbers[.]"  The significance of this statement is that it was made by the Senate majority leader at a time when the private sector was suffering the highest unemployment rate in many decades.  A week before Reid's comments, Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. suggested that we need $204 billion to bail out cities and states and that this task is so important that the president should declare a national emergency.  President Obama has said we need to "save" teacher jobs

Clearly, these statements show that the focus of the Obama administration and his party is on public-sector jobs, and he has selected teachers' jobs as a high priority.

What does Arizona's immigration law have to do with teachers' jobs?  The answer to this question should connect the Democrats' mission statements to the Supreme Court challenge.  As it turns out, the answers are found in the traditional sources: campaign contributions and political power. 

In Illinois, the state where Obama once served in the state Senate, the two teachers' unions are the largest contributors to Democrats running for state offices.  In 2005-06, teacher unions contributed $4.5 million, in 2007-8 $2.95 million -- more than any other donorsii.  On the national level, of the ten largest all-time campaign donors, four are in the public sector, and the majority of their money goes to the Democratic Partyiii; AFCSME gives only one percent of its campaign donations to Republicansiv.  The Democratic Party heavily depends on public-sector union campaign contributions at the local, state, and national levels. 

The next step, the connection between teachers' unions and illegal immigrants, is that illegal immigrants are essential to the survival of public-sector jobs in cities such as Chicago.  And since Obama and his education secretary Arne Duncan are both from Chicago, it's useful to see how Chicago's teachers' unions stand to benefit from illegal immigration.

The benefit is simple and direct: just as Democrats get campaign money from the teacher unions, teachers get their money based on the number of students enrolled at their schools.  Each Chicago public student brings $15,800v from local, state, and federal sources.  Therein lies the connection: in older industrial cities such as Chicago, the only portion of the student body that is increasing is Hispanicvi.  The enrollment of white, African-American, and Asian students has been declining for decades.

Right now the only hope Chicago teachers have of hanging onto their jobs -- and the only hope Democrats have of receiving teacher campaign money -- is to pander to Hispanic students.  A University of Chicago study found that most white children born in the city leave within five years, while Hispanic children stayvii.  As a result, schools are closing down in black and white neighborhoods, and new schools are being built only in Hispanic neighborhoods.  This is why Hispanics are being carefully funneled into Hispanic supermajority neighborhoods, a neat political tactic enabled by the Voting Rights Act.  This legal demographic tool enables city wards to be gerrymandered into ethnic supermajorities to achieve the goal of maintaining "representation" for the minorities. 

Logistical support for this population is provided through the matricula consular card and other benefitsviii.  These benefits help keep the Hispanic population growing: Mexican families have an average of 3.5ix children, about twice as many as white taxpayers, and more than any other Hispanic group.  In Chicago, each illegal immigrant Mexican family brings $69,000 to public-sector jobholders; other illegal immigrant ethnicities, $59,000x.  So if one were to  maximize income from children, one would choose Hispanics, and Mexicans specifically, to bring in the most money to public-sector jobholders.

Nationally, figures indicating the growth of Hispanic students are even more stunning.  Since Chicago's Sanctuary Policy started in 1985,  now most Hispanics of school age are born in the U.S.: while Hispanics are 14% of the U.S. population, one-fourth of all newborns in the U.S. are Hispanic, and one-fifth of all school-age children are Hispanicxi.  In California, one-half of the students are Hispanic; in Chicago, 44%.  Only 8.8% of Chicago public-school students are white.  So the resource-maximizer of education in the big Democrat-run cities is not better school curricula or longer class days, but rather larger Hispanic populations.  Legal immigration and births could never provide enough new students to keep the schools going. 

Maintaining voter rolls and political power are also primary reasons for illegal immigration: Illinois has 490, 000 illegal immigrants, enough to save one congressional seatxii.  Congressional district populations do not need citizens, only "residents," to support a representative. 

A 1982 investigation by U.S. Attorney Daniel Webb found that 80,000 illegal aliens were registered to vote in Chicagoxiii.  From 1990 to 2000, the number of Hispanics of voting age in Cook County, IL increased 54% to 689,383xiv

So illegal immigration is the strategy Democrats have enabled, through administrative corruption, to keep classrooms full, campaign money flowing, and congressional seats maintained. 

The flow of illegal immigrants to Chicago is also encouraged by the city's Sanctuary Policy, a benefit-enabling policy first passed in 1985xv.  This act encourages the flow of illegal immigrants to the city.  Not all illegal immigrants are Hispanic  -- Chicago also has a sizable population of Polish and other Eastern European illegal immigrants.  They arrive legally and become illegal only when they overstay their visas.  The vast majority of those arriving into Arizona are, however, Hispanic. 

Think of illegal immigration as a type of make-work program, like the WPA in the 1930s.  Only, instead of bringing workers into national forests to carve hiking paths, illegal immigrants are being encouraged and supported to go to metro areas where they keep teachers, social workers, school lunch vendors, and politicians in their public-sector jobs.  Without people, people programs and politicians cannot exist.  To paraphrase Eisenhower, a vast "illegal immigrant-entitlement complex" has been created.  Its goal is to support the public-jobs infrastructure created by the Great Society programs. 

For these reasons, Obama cannot stand by and allow any state, particularly Arizona -- which serves as an entryway for illegal immigrants -- to interfere with the flow of immigrants into the U.S. and Democrat-controlled cities. 

iSenate Bill 1070.  Source: http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/49leg/2r/bills/sb1070s.pdf .  Accessed: May 6, 2012.

iiNolan et al.  p.  56.

iiiSource: opensecrets.org/orgs/list.php?order=A  Accessed: May 6, 2012.


v"They spend what? The real cost of public schools." Cato Institute, Policy Analysis No.  662, March 20, 2010, p.  10.

vi"Chicago Children and Youth," p.  14.

viiChicago Children and Youth, p.  14. 

viii"The matricula consular: the only card an illegal immigrant will ever need." American Thinker, April 27, 2012, Michael Bargo Jr. 

ix"Birth rates among immigrants in America, Comparing fertility in the U.S.  and home countries," Steven A Camarota, Center for Immigration Studies, Backgrounder, October, 2005, p.  5.  Table 2.

xBargo, 'Mexicago, Vol.  2, Exhibit 23.

xiBetween two worlds: How young Latinos come of age in America." Pew Hispanic Center, Dec.  2009, p.  1.  Source: www.pewresearch.org/millennials.

xii"Estimates of the unauthorized immigrant population residing in the United States: January, 2010."  Homeland Security, Office of Immigration Statistics, Policy Directorate, February, 2011.  p.  4.

xiiiWhere there's Smoke, there's fire: 100,000 stolen votes in Chicago, Hans von

Spakovsky, The Heritage Foundation, April 16, 2008.  p.4.

xiv"Cook County, Illinois: Demographic Profile." Applied Technology and

Research Center, United States Hispanic Leadership Institute Report.

xvExecutive Order 85-1, Harold Washington, Mayor, March 7, 1985.  Source: www.chicityclerk.com/executive_orders/(3%)20Harold%20Washington/Harold%20Washingtonoptimize.pdf.  Found March 24, 2011

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