Jan Brewer, Russell Pearce, Tom Horne Lose (Again) on SB 1070, This Time On Harboring Provision
Governor Jan Brewer, recalled redneck pol Russell Pearce, Brewer's "brain" Chuck Coughlin, and Attorney General Tom "Hit-and-Run" Horne best hope and pray there is no afterlife.
Because if there is, I virtually can assure them that they, along with their pal Sheriff Joe, will boil in a hot tub of molten lava for their futile, money-sucking, Tea Party-pandering support of Senate Bill 1070, which has suffered yet another defeat in federal court.
On Tuesday a panel of the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the harboring provision of 1070 was so badly written as to be "unconstitutionally vague" and "nonsensical."
Which isn't surprising, considering that Brewer has the functioning IQ of a tadpole and Pearce, 1070's hateful "author," is borderline illiterate to judge from the man's near-incomprehensible emails and incoherent oratory.
The Ninth's opinion, written by Judge Richard Paez, reads, in part, that,
"Section 13-2929 states that `[i]t is unlawful for a person who is in violation of a criminal offense' to knowingly or recklessly transport, conceal, harbor, or shield an unauthorized alien. We conclude that the phrase `in violation of a criminal offense' is unintelligible and therefore the statute is void for vagueness."
Paez cites the Oxford U.S. English Dictionary, which defines "offense" as a "breach of a law or rule," and Black's Law Dictionary, which defines "offense" as "a violation of the law."
The jurist continues:
"In sum, an offense is an action...And one cannot violate, or be in violation of, an action...`In violation of an offense,' an element of § 13-2929, thus translates to "in violation of a violation of the law,' which is, of course, nonsensical."
How pathetic that Paez is called upon to explain the English language to Her Highness Jan "We Have Did" Brewer and the passel of hillbillies that make up our state's legislature.
The appellants' lawyers tried to save the day, arguing that the Ninth Circuit "should interpret the statute as they suggest because...that would save the statute."
To which, Paez sniffs, "Rewriting the statute is a job for the Arizona legislature, if it is so inclined, and not for this court."
All three judges on the Ninth's panel agree that the harboring provision is "void for vagueness." But even if they were to let that slide, two of the judges conclude that the harboring provision is, in any case, preempted by federal immigration law.
Crikey, didn't the appellants bother to read the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Arizona v. United States, wherein the court ruled that federal immigration law is paramount and the states cannot go around concocting their own immigration schemes?