In the weeks since Arizona passed its controversial anti-immigration
law, pundits outraged at the measure have thrown
around ideas about boycotting the state
. The boycott proposals were mainly considered symbolic gestures of disapproval. But now the
boycotts appear to be having an economic impact. One passed by the Los
Angeles city council, which forbids
any official travel to the state
and pursues the cancellation of all $58 million in city contracts to
Arizona companies, has drawn significant attention. Are the boycotts a
good idea? Are they going to change immigration policy?
Tourism Loses $6-10M Think Progress' Andrea Nill writes that the now
23 canceled events "couldn’t be happening at a worse time for Arizona’s
tourism industry. Earlier this year, the Arizona legislature decided to
cut the tourism budget back significantly, slashing the parks budget
alone by $8.6
million. The Arizona Republic reports
that Arizona tourism lobbyists simply didn’t see the Arizona tourism
backlash coming when they decided to ignore SB-1070 as it moved through
the state Congress."
- Phoenix 'Near Economic Crisis' With $90M
Possible Loss Talking Points Memo's Zachary Roth reports on a
report produced at the request of the Phoenix mayor and city council to
study "the potential economic impact of canceled trips" due to the
immigration boycott. Roth emphasizes that the findings are speculative
and the math vague, but that it concludes the city could lose as much as
- Boycotts Won't Turn Public Support for Law
National Review's Heather Mac Donald
cautions, "The illegal-alien lobby won’t take on the law as
written, because the lobby knows that the overwhelmingly majority of
Americans would support the law as written. Even with media
coverage that has been unrelentingly biased and inaccurate, 59
percent of adults surveyed by the Pew Research Center for the People
& the Press say they support the Arizona law."
- Is the
L.A. Boycott Constitutional? Legal blogger David Post worries, "I wouldn’t
think that the 'dormant commerce clause,' which prohibits
discriminatory measures taken by one State (or municipality within a
State) against another, could countenance this. But maybe I’m missing
something?" The Moderate Voice's Jason Arvak
explores in greater detail.
Like L.A. Had Any Money Anyway Arizona blogger Exurban Jon quips, "No biggie. They
can only pay us in IOUs anyway."
- Boycott Gov.
Brewer, Not Arizona The Huffington Post's Luis Heredia reminds us
that a lot of people live in Arizona, all of whom would be hurt by the
boycott, but only Arizona's politicians who voted for the immigration
law should be targeted. "Extremist Republicans control our state
government. But now there is momentum in Arizona and a unique chance to
take back our state."
- L.A. Boycott Can't Touch Air Travel The
L.A. Times' Paul Thornton writes, "I can
think of one contract the city won't be able cancel, let alone modify
because of the boycott: service by Arizona-based airlines US Airways and
Mesa Air at LAX. Federal regulations prohibit public airports from
unjustly discriminating against different carriers; telling US Airways
it can no longer serve LAX because of an ideological disagreement
between Los Angeles and Arizona probably wouldn't fly with the feds."
Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments
or send an email to the author at
mfisher at theatlantic dot com.
You can share ideas for stories on the Open Wire.