MALDEF Issues Statement in Response to U.S. Department of Justice Lawsuit Against Arizona's Anti-Immigrant Law SB 1070

Thomas A. Saenz, MALDEF President and General Counsel, vows to continue to defend the civil rights of all Arizona residents and commends the Obama Administration and Department of Justice for joining the fight

July 6, 2010

LOS ANGELES, CA – Today, MALDEF issued a response to the announcement by the United States Department of Justice of its decision to file suit against Arizona and legally challenge the constitutionality of Arizona's racially discriminatory, anti-immigrant law known as SB 1070.

MALDEF President and General Counsel Thomas A. Saenz issued the following statement:

"MALDEF is encouraged by steps the Department of Justice (DOJ) has recently taken to vindicate the federal government's exclusive authority to regulate immigration throughout the nation. By today filing a lawsuit challenging Arizona's SB 1070, and by previously urging the Supreme Court to review Arizona's employment eligibility law, the Obama Administration has demonstrated that it will, following in the footsteps of its strongest predecessors, take action to preserve our longstanding constitutional plan, which has fostered our development into the great nation that we have long been. Governor Jan Brewer cannot be permitted to pervert federal policy priorities and obstruct national progress all in the name of political pandering.

Of course, what is imperative to protect the rights of Arizona residents is that the state be barred from planned implementation of SB 1070 on July 29. We look forward to working with the federal government to ensure that the timeline for the Friendly House lawsuit, with a scheduled hearing on preliminary injunction set for July 22, continues to apply as the new DOJ lawsuit commences its court journey."

For all media inquiries, please contact Laura Rodriguez.

Copyright 2009 MALDEF — Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund