The Future of Illegal Immigration in America?


No doubt illegal immigration is a major issue in this great country. The influx of illegals has caused a drag on our economy and society and needs to be addressed as effectively as possible. Fortunately, the future is looking bright.

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court started hearing arguments for Arizona’s high-profile immigration law SB 1070. The Court spent most of the time discussing the provisions for Section 2 of the law, which requires that during a routine traffic stop, officers check the immigration status of someone they think is in the US illegally. 

The resulting questioning and statements made by the Justices during the argument indicated that the Court would uphold this aspect of the law, seeing through the Obama administration’s argument that the state is exceeding its power.

But is Arizona actually exceeding its power? The Obama administration believes that the country cannot afford to have “a patchwork of immigration laws” and that, according to Solicit General Donald Verrilli, the country should have a singular approach to the immigration problem. 

But how is a singular approach a good idea when the state of Arizona is bearing the brunt of illegal immigration, with one-third of all border crossings happening there? The extent to which immigration affects a state’s economy, resources, and society varies by the state, so why should a state like Montana have the same laws as Arizona, Mr. Obama?

A decision on the law is expected this summer; however, supporters are optimistic for its chances after seeing its positive reception in the courtroom. The decision will also determine the fate of similar laws passed by other states, which have been put on hold until the Arizona case is decided.

If upheld, a new precedent will certainly be set in how states deal with immigration.

Furthermore, a report was released on Monday that indicated Mexican immigration is declining rapidly. Between 2005 and 2010, 1.37 million Mexican immigrants came to the US, which is half the number of immigrants in than previous five-year periods. But the number of Mexicans returning to Mexico, conversely, has increased to more than double seen in previous five-year periods—1.39 million between 2005 and 2010. And the number of illegal immigrants arrested in attempted border crossings has sharply declined as well.

What does this suggest? We’re getting immigration under control. If the Supreme Court upholds Arizona’s law, combined with this recent immigration trend, we can be seeing some major changes in the future.


-Douglas E. Payne