[Guest post by DRJ]
Today the Obama Administration sued the State of Arizona, challenging the constitutionality of a recent law that targets illegal immigrants and arguing Arizona doesn’t have the right to pre-empt the federal government’s authority over immigration:
“The federal government’s legal case turns on the question of pre-emption — the notion that only Washington has the authority to set immigration policy. The Justice Department’s complaint says that Arizona’s statute, which Republican Gov. Jan Brewer signed in April, “is preempted by federal law and therefore violates the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution.”
Violation of the Supremacy Clause;
Federal pre-emption; and
Violation of the Commerce Clause.
The Obama Administration requests a declaratory judgment that the Arizona law is null and a preliminary and permanent injunction against enforcement of the law. It also seeks costs against the State of Arizona.
To obtain a preliminary injunction, the federal government must meet each part of a four prong test: (1) a substantial likelihood of success on the merits; (2) a substantial threat that failure to grant the injunction will result in irreparable injury; (3) that the threatened injury outweighs any damage that the injunction may cause the opposing party; and (4) that the injunction will not disserve the public interest. Just as Judge Feldman did in blocking Obama’s moratorium on offshore drilling, the Court in this Arizona case will balance the injury on the parties and consider the impact the injunction will have on “the public interest.”
Professor Jacobson at Legal Insurrection says the case has been assigned to U.S. District Judge Neil V. Wake. Because the Obama Administration is seeking a preliminary injunction, Judge Wake will give us an early view of his stand on this case when he rules on whether there is a “substantial likelihood” the Obama Administration will prevail on the merits.
UPDATE: Arizona Governor Jan Brewer has sent out a request for donations to help Arizona defend its law.