The next round in the nation’s interminable battle over illegal immigration will come Wednesday when the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments in a case challenging Arizona’s law, which gives local police more power to question and detain suspected undocumented immigrants. The issue is what role states can play in enforcing federal immigration laws. It’s an important question, but what’s really needed is a cease-fire in the brawl over illegal immigration and some consensus on a less restrictive legal immigration system.
Employers, unions and others who gathered at SUNY Old Westbury Friday for an immigration summit made it clear the costly, bureaucratic system for work visas hurts our economy and badly needs Washington’s attention. A serious campaign debate on immigration is essential so the next president and Congress will have a mandate for action.