Good morning from the White House, which is pleased with that big court ruling yesterday that effectively guts an Arizona crackdown on illegal immigrants. But the legal fight goes on, as the pressure on the White House and Congress to pass a national law grows.
Out goes the most controversial part of the law, which, starting today, would have required police to try and determine the immigration status of anyone they stop, detain or arrest, if they suspect that person is in the U.S. illegally.
The White House said from the get go that such a law was unconstitutional and would lead to racial profiling and harassment of American citizens, legal immigrants and foreign visitors.
U.S. District Judge Susan R. Bolton agreed, saying in a 36-page ruling that it was "not in the public interest" for Arizona to preempt federal enforcement of immigration law.
Also out are provisions in the Arizona law that would have required foreigners to apply for or carry certain documents and make it a crime for illegals "to solicit, apply for or perform work."
Although Judge Bolton upheld other parts of the law, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R), says she'll appeal, calling the ruling "A little bump in the road."
The President tackles another thorny issue today - race - when he makes a much anticipated speech to the National Urban League. We're told he'll make his first public comments on Shirley Sherrod - remember her? - that was last week's big story.
And one of this week's big stories - the Wikileaks release of documents on the Afghan war - is certain to come up during a National Security meeting on Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The FBI is now helping the Pentagon identify the leaker of those 91,000 documents; Director Robert Mueller told a Senate panel yesterday the investigation could go in any direction.
But that direction appears headed straight for Army Pfc. Bradley E. Manning. The 22-year-old
intelligence specialist is already behind bars, charged earlier this month with passing classified information to an "unauthorized source" while stationed in Iraq. A former hacker in whom Manning has confided tells the Washington Post that Manning passed documents and videos to WikiLeaks. The former hacker, Adrian Lamo, said "the overwhelming probability" is that Manning was WikiLeaks' source for the documents.
Ups and Downs
Meantime, President Obama tells the ABC talk show "The View" that his 20 months in office have been a series of ups and downs> Barbara Walters asked him about the downs:
Obama: "Where do I begin?"
After the laughter died down, the President got serious:
"Look, the country has gone through a tough stretch. Since I took office when I was sworn in ... the last 20 months have been a nonstop effort to restart the economy, to stabilize the financial system, to make sure we are creating jobs and not losing them."
Obama also mentioned the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the oil spill and last winter's swine flu scare.
What about the ups?
"In the last month the rose has to be a couple of days we took in Maine with Michelle, Sasha and Malia," he said. "They're full of opinions and ideas and observations and it's just a great age ... Malia just turned 12 and Sasha 9. Couldn't been a better couple of days."
10:05AM THE PRESIDENT delivers a major education reform speech at the National Urban League 100th Anniversary Convention
Washington Convention Center
Open to pre-credentialed media (In-Town Travel Pool Gather Time 9:30AM – North Doors of the Palm Room)
11:10AM THE PRESIDENT meets with his national security team for his monthly meeting on Afghanistan and Pakistan
12:35PM THE PRESIDENT and THE VICE PRESIDENT have lunch
Private Dining Room
1:45PM THE PRESIDENT receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
4:50PM THE PRESIDENT signs the Tribal Law and Order Act
Open Press (Pre-set 3:50PM – Final Gather 4:20PM – North Doors of the Palm Room)
7:05PM THE PRESIDENT attends a DNC finance event
Closed Press (In-Town Travel Pool Gather Time 6:30PM – North Doors of the Palm Room)
2:00PM Briefing by Press Secretary Robert Gibbs
- Paul Brandus at the White House