IMMIGRATION IS one of the most sensitive subjects in America, but in an election year it can prove to be the most divisive as well. Monday’s split ruling by the Supreme Court in the contentious Arizona immigration case has brought immigration reform to the fore in an election year.
While the court upheld the controversial ‘show me your papers’ requirement allowing the police to check the immigration status of a suspect detained for other reasons, it struck down crucial provisions that would require all immigrants to carry registration papers, make it a state criminal offence for illegal aliens to work and allow authorities to arrest them without warrants.
While opinion polls have indicated that a majority of Americans have backed Arizona’s allegedly harsh immigration law, which have also been adapted and enacted by five other states, politicians are now hoping to tone down their anti-migrant stance. Mitt Romney, the likely Republican presidential nominee, who accused rivals such as Newt Gingrich of being soft on illegal immigration, while trying to build up his right-wing image, is now apparently diluting his stance in a bid to woo the Hispanic voter.
The former Massachusetts governor accused President Barack Obama of failing to provide leadership on immigration. As candidate Obama had promised to present an immigration plan in his first year in office, but even after four years in office, he could not do so, declares Romney.