States, Fed Gov’t At Odds Over Illegal Immigration

Frustrated by what they see as a lack of government enforcement and support, some states are taking illegal immigration into their own hands, considering a variety of legislation and action at local levels.

Several states, including Utah and Michigan have been debating immigration legislation. And now, the chairman of Prince William County, Virginia, Corey Stewart, is suing the Department of Homeland Security, seeking records about illegal immigrants in his county. Stewart and former Justice Department official Tom Dupree talked to Fox News on Sunday about the limitations and frustrations playing out across the country when it comes to illegal immigration.

Stewart believes the federal government isn't doing its job when it comes to managing illegal immigrants. In his county, Stewart has requested "information about illegal immigrants under the Freedom of Information Act" requests that he says have been "stonewalled" at the federal level.

Tom Dupree says the government is in a tough position when it comes to illegal immigration, acknowledging that the amount of activity happening at the state level "sends the message to Washington that the job is not getting done." Dupree maintains enforcing illegal immigration is the federal government's job, and if states want to implement their own legislation they should do so in a manner that "shows they're not doing anything that conflicts with federal law."

Stewart isn't against the federal government playing a role in illegal immigration, but he wants it to be regulated in a consistent manner. A recent Rasmussen Reports poll found that 67% of those polled believe states should have the right to enforce illegal immigration laws if the federal government is not enforcing them.