The Stubbornest AG in the U.S.?

April 25, 2008 at 1:30pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Attorney General Jon Bruning is stubbornly refusing to cooperate with the Nebraska Equal Opportunity Commission on housing discrimination cases involving illegal immigrants. Bruning says that undocumented individuals are not entitled to the state’s support. The NEOC says that the individuals aren’t receiving support, rather federal law is being enforced. Almost everybody around the country sides with the NEOC.

The immigration issue isn’t the only problem here. The Attorney General’s office has been a thorn in the NEOC’s side for quite a while. The NEOC says the AG won’t investigate cases like he is obligated to do; the AG says the cases are poorly investigated by the NEOC.

Regardless of who is right or wrong by law, this seems to be the sort of situation that illustrates just how wishy-washy we are on immigration issues in this country. If being here illegally is, well, illegal, why aren’t landlords within their responsibilities to deny housing to illegal aliens? Isn’t it their civic duty to prevent people engaged in illegal activities from living on their property, just as it is their civic responsibility to boot out, say, folks operating a meth lab? The one thing Bruning has going for him on this issue is the consistency of his assertion that illegal means illegal. Protection from housing discrimination is not an inherent right—such as protection from bodily harm—to which illegal immigrants are entitled.

Is this a case of everybody’s right and everybody’s wrong? Any guesses on what the outcome will be?

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The Comments

Fletch April 25, 2008 at 3:10pm

Like him or not, Jon Bruning will win out on this issue. People who are sympathetic are always quick to point out we are a nation of immigrants. Yes, we are. God Bless America for that. What they conveniently ignore is the word “illegal.” I think his assertion that illegal is illegal will win in court, even if it doesn’t in the court of public opinion. His office gives him a lot of protection from personal lawsuits and whatnot. He’s sitting in a good place, even if it’s not a popular place.

Swid April 25, 2008 at 3:21pm

Yes, we should all pat ourselves on the back for having ancestors who did things the “right” way by arriving here before 1924. We had, in effect, no immigration controls before that time and last time I checked, the United States didn’t collapse in on itself during that era.

CS April 25, 2008 at 3:43pm

Maybe Fletch, but since Federal trumps State with regard to HUD, how is he going to win, regardless of your assertion that ‘illegal is illegal’? The Federal law that he is not following doesn’t say anything about citizenship status, and protection under the law is not ‘non-emergency’ benefits. They aren’t applying for welfare, here, they are demanding basic human decency.

Dave K April 25, 2008 at 3:45pm

If Bruning was a black, anti-religion leftist from Omaha, he would have a statue in front of the capital building, which would be named after him.  He would be heralded for standing by his principles and get daily glowing profiles in the Lincoln Journal Star.  The comments on the LJS story are quite frightening.

Neal April 25, 2008 at 3:52pm

Hey everybody, look, it’s Strawman Dave to the rescue!

The law is the law, and has been pointed out, the law was carefully written to include all people regardless of citizenship.

I lose track, guys. I thought we were supposed to put emotion aside and oppose illegal immigrants because the law is the law, and we must uphold the law of the land. But we’re supposed to cheer Jon Bruning for not only fighting state and federal law, but for costing the state hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in the process?

Dave K April 25, 2008 at 3:57pm

‘Straw man’ must be counter-argument of the day ... regardless, you completely missed the point.

Gene April 25, 2008 at 4:48pm

Jon Bruning would just say that you’re supposed to cheer for him and leave it at that.

Neal April 25, 2008 at 5:46pm

Since it appears to me your point is based upon a fabricated scenario that you created in order to prove your fantasy, why don’t you go ahead and explain your point then, Dave.

Fletch April 25, 2008 at 6:15pm

I didn’t say, or mean to imply, that I am cheering for Bruning. The question is what *I* think the outcome will be. In this case, my prediction is that the outcome will be to Jon Bruning’s liking. That’s along the same lines as my prediction that there would be no more snow in Lincoln or that the football team will win 8 or 9 games this year. I wasn’t implying anything on the status of illegals or (for Swid) implying that the country is collapsing in on itself over the issue of illegals and Bruning vs. the NEOC. Perhaps my “illegal is illegal” phrase is as poorly used as it was by him, but I was trying to paraphrase Mr. W.

Neal April 25, 2008 at 6:24pm

Thank you, Mr Wilson. This discussion inspired my cartoon for Sunday.

CS April 25, 2008 at 6:25pm

Noted, Fletch-His assertion, not yours.
Sorry! grin


CAS

Fletch April 25, 2008 at 6:36pm

No worries. I think Bruning is one of those politicians that just comes off as unlikable every time he opens his mouth. He reminds me of Steve Pederson in that way. I am glad SP is gone, but I did feel bad for him once in awhile, in that once in awhile he would say exactly the right thing, but he had that stupid smirk and condescending look that ruined the message.

I have a couple of friends from South America that live here and are on student visas. I had a discussion with one a few weeks ago, and she told me how long it will take her to become a US citizen by following the proper procedures. It seems to me that the visa she’s on now will be replaced by a work visa or something, and she’ll have that for 5 years, and then there’s another wait and a test and by the time it’s said and done, she will have lived here for a decade or more before she can be a citizen. When you see that commitment and desire in a young person, to me, that’s what our ancestors had. There are a ton of hard-working illegals here and I am not advocating rounding them up and sending them home, but I hate to see millions of people just skirt the system when so many are trying to follow the rules and do it the right way. I am equally as ticked about the thousands of Nebraskans that illegally title their cars elsewhere. The issue for me is that the people that obey the rules, which includes probably all of the readers and posters at Lincolnite, do suffer because of others that don’t. That irritates me to no end. However, I’m not some angry loon walking the border with a gun. Does that make sense?

CS April 25, 2008 at 6:55pm

My big hangup is that our ancestors signed a book at Ellis-it didn’t take a decade or more with thousands of dollars in fees and BS (more fees) and lost paperwork, and (fees) to get it done. They can always manage to make it happen when it looks good on TV (a Marine, 2 yr hitch, yadda yadda) but poor, working class people get the shaft it seems.

Mr. T April 25, 2008 at 10:10pm

In response to your digression Dave - The thing is, Ernie Chambers (assuming that is who you are referring to) isn’t admired for being a “black, anti-religion leftist.” Come on man.

Dave K April 26, 2008 at 6:12pm

In order for that to be true, I’d have to believe that Ernie would get the same admiration if he was a white, religious right-winger.  In fact, there are such folks in politics today who get destroyed in the media and elsewhere for the types of things Ernie is worshiped for.

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