President Barack Obama has asked the Justice Department to review Arizona’s controversial new immigration enforcement law, enacted today with Republican Gov. Jan Brewer’s signature.
Obama said Friday that immigration reform is a federal issue, and that enacting piecemeal measures at the state level would be leaving the door open to “irresponsibility by others,” reported the Washington Post.
“That includes, for example, the recent efforts in Arizona, which threaten to undermine basic notions of fairness that we cherish as Americans, as well as the trust between police and their communities that is so crucial to keeping us safe,” Obama said, according to the Post.
The investigation would fall to the Civil Rights Division, where Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez has made combating discrimination against Latinos a top priority.
A Justice Department spokeswoman on Friday said the department would look at whether the new Arizona measure violates federal civil rights laws.