Steinberg's office responds

CalWatchdog just received this response from Darrell Steinberg’s communications director Nathan Barankin regarding this recent blog post:

I read your blog post about the exchange of correspondence between Senator Steinberg and a constituent regarding the State of Arizona’s new immigration law.  And because I know you disdain ignorance, arrogance, and narcissism, I want to alert you to an error in your post.

The California law to which you refer, Penal Code section 834b, was ruled unconstitutional in 1997.  In other words, the statute is void.

Regardless, even if section 834b was in effect, it is not “practically identical” to the Arizona statute – even as most recently amended.  The Arizona statute is considerably broader, requiring investigation into the immigration status of a person pursuant to a “lawful stop, detention or arrest.”  The California law, which was found unconstitutional, was limited only to “arrests,” and so it is clear that the Arizona law is more expansive since it also applies to “stops” and “detentions.”  If you still have questions about the significance of these terms and the differences between the two statutes, I encourage you to contact an attorney who is an expert on criminal procedure and the 4th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

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  1. Admin
    Admin Author 22 May, 2010, 11:19

    Imagine, a politician lecturing others about disdaining “ignorance, arrogance, and narcissism.”

    And by the way, the Constitution begins, “We the people,” not “We the constitutional lawyers,” or “We the politicians.”

    — John Seiler

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  2. StevefromSacto
    StevefromSacto 23 May, 2010, 09:59

    John, there is nothing in your response that refutes in any way the point of Sen. Steinberg’s post.

    But when you can’t rely on the facts to counter the message, you can always insult the messenger.

    And by the way, here’s a wonderful take on the real reason for illegal immigration.

    “The main reason that Arizona has so many illegal immigrants is not because the federal government has fallen down on the job. The reason the state is home to an estimated 500,000 illegal immigrants is because Arizonans are addicted to cheap and dependable labor provided by illegal immigrants who do jobs that Americans won’t do. Senator McCain knows this better than most people. Remember when he confronted angry unemployed union members who insisted that illegal immigrants were taking their jobs, and he called them on it. He even offered them jobs picking lettuce in Yuma for $50 per hour on the condition that they stay the whole season. He didn’t get too many takers.

    “The point is that this isn’t an invasion but a self-inflicted wound. We have illegal immigrants because we hire illegal immigrants. And any politician who doesn’t make this point as often as he can isn’t offering straight talk.”

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