Byron York

"I have not called for a general 'boycott' of Arizona," Grijalva answered. "I have called for a targeted ban on conventions and conferences in the state for a limited time. The idea is to send a message, not grind down the state economy." The problem is, the damage could be difficult to contain once it has started.

This tense situation is made worse by the Obama administration's continued threats to take Arizona to court over the law. Attorney General Eric Holder, who admits he has not actually read the law, says it could lead to racial profiling and become a "slippery slope to where people will be picked on because of how they look." Holder is hinting broadly that a federal lawsuit is on the way.

Holder's determination flies in the face of the majority of Americans who want the administration to take a deep breath and calm down. A recent Fox News poll asked this question: "Do you think the Obama administration should try to stop the new Arizona immigration law, or should the administration wait and see how the law works?"

An overwhelming majority of those questioned -- 64 percent -- say the administration should wait and see how the law works, while just 15 percent want action now. The wait-and-see group includes huge majorities of Republicans and Independents. Even Democrats favor wait-and-see by 52 percent to 26 percent -- a two-to-one margin.

Everyone seems to have gotten the message except all those people, some of them in positions of great power, calling for court battles, economic warfare and protests in the streets. It's a state of affairs that leaves business leaders scratching their heads in amazement. "We should be talking about how to fix this problem," Broome says, "and not getting into an eye-for-an-eye strategy."

Byron York

Byron York, chief political correspondent for The Washington Examiner