Sunday, August 29, 2010

SB 1070 and the UN

Wow.  The State Department has apparently included the Obama administration's efforts to block SB 1070 as part of its human rights report to the United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights.  Although I find lots of mentions, I cannot find text of the report.  The UN had previously expressed concern that the law violated human rights agreements the U.S. has already ratified.

We already knew the administration's opposition to the bill, but acknowledging a controversial law as an international human rights concern is rare.  So rare that I can't think of a precedent.  It highlights Kathryn Sikkink's work on human rights and international institutions, where gradually human rights concerns gain traction even over very strong states.

The probable angry reaction will also reflect the fact that in the U.S. we are very selective about when the UN should be influential and when it shouldn't.


leftside 12:16 AM  

This is all the offending report actually said about SB 1080:

"A recent Arizona law, S.B. 1070, has generated significant attention and debate at home and around the world," the report says. "The issue is being addressed in a court action that argues that the federal government has the authority to set and enforce immigration law. That action is ongoing; parts of the law are currently enjoined."

I don't see any mention of the Administration "acknowledging the law is a human rights concern." All they say is that the matter is in court because of concerns with whether the Federal or State takes precedence. Right wingers are making hay over nothing again - and liberals take the bait.

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