The following is a re-posting of an Op-Ed written by US Rep. Sue Myrick and issued to the media yesterday (05/21/10):
Since it was introduced, President Obama has been an open opponent to the new immigration law in Arizona. So, it was no surprise when he criticized the law during a press conference yesterday in the Rose Garden with Mexican President Felipe Calderón.
What was surprising, and quite frankly offensive, was that the President was playing backup to Calderón’s comments about the Arizona law, which he called “discriminatory”, warning that Mexico would not support US efforts to “criminalize migration”. Since when is it acceptable for the leader of a foreign country stand on American soil and bash the laws of one of our states – a state that has the right and responsibility to make and enforce its laws for the protection of its citizens? Since when is it acceptable for the leader of our country to stand by and allow it?
Well, it isn’t acceptable.
Millions of Mexican citizens have illegally entered the United States. This is in direct violation of U.S. law, and if the tables were turned, it’s doubtful the Mexican government would tolerate millions of our citizens living and working in their country illegally.
Instead of criticizing the domestic policy of the United States, perhaps Calderón should examine the domestic policy of Mexico. After all, most illegal immigrants disregard our immigration laws in an effort to find jobs unavailable in their home countries.
I introduced a resolution with Rep Gary Miller and Rep. Lamar Smith expressing support for the right of states to enforce immigration law on a local level. The federal government has failed to do this, and it has fallen on local law enforcement to make sure that laws are obeyed. One of the best examples of this is the 287g program in Charlotte, which has proved effective in ensuring that criminal illegal aliens who are eligible for deportation don’t slip through the cracks.
Everyone can agree that our immigration system must be reformed, but that does not negate the fact that a system is in place for people to come here legally, and these laws must be obeyed. People who come to the United States illegally have broken the law – it’s as simple as that. Illegal is illegal. Our President should have the conviction to speak up when foreign leaders – while standing on US soil – insult the laws that have been put in place to protect our nation and our people.