Arizona’s tough anti-illegal immigration law SB 1070 was enacted into law on June 29 of last year. The Obama administration immediately sued Arizona and got an injunction preventing it from going into effect while the case was litigated. Critics warned that the law would hurt Arizona; no one would want to move to Arizona and illegal immigrants would flee the state, ruining the economy.
The sky-is-falling alarmists were wrong. Results from the 2010 Census reveal that Arizona is the second-fastest growing state in the country after Nevada. Lee McPheters, director of the J.P. Morgan Chase Economic Outlook Center at Arizona State University’s W. P. Carey School of Business, predicts that Arizona’s population will increase by close to two percent this year.
Canadians tired of the cold weather are flocking to Arizona, taking advantage of the weak American dollar and the high number of foreclosures in Arizona. Phoenix has the second highest foreclosure rate in the nation.
People all over the country fought back against the boycotts of Arizona, organizing “buycotts” and purposely traveling to Arizona to help with tourism. After the Los Angeles City Council issued a resolution against Arizona, Corporation Commissioner Gary Pierce sent Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa a letter saying he would “be happy to encourage Arizona utilities to renegotiate your power agreements so Los Angeles no longer receives any power from Arizona-based generation.” Los Angeles gets 25 percent of its electricity from Arizona power plants.
Governor Jan Brewer set up a legal defense fund to cover the costs of defending Arizona against lawsuits over SB 1070. Close to $4 million in contributions has come in from over 43,000 Americans around the country, more than enough to cover the $1.5 million in costs so far. Meanwhile, taxpayers across the country are stuck footing the bill for the Obama administration’s lawsuit.
Reports that SB 1070 is hurting Arizona economically are not taking into account the economic downturn. Since Arizona has been one of the fastest growing states, it now has one of the highest rates of foreclosures. It has been hit harder by the recession than most of the rest of the country. Arizona lost twice as many jobs as the average state during the recession. Even so, by fall of last year Arizona ranked 12th for job creation of the 50 states.