car·riage re·turn

n. the lever or mechanism on a typewriter that would cause the cylinder on which the paper was held (the carriage) to return to the left margin of the page


Good News re:Gov. Napolitano’s Prospective Secretaryship

Via Reason‘s Dave Weigel:

On Tuesday,Gov. Janet Napolitano signed a measure,House Bill 2677,barring Arizona’s compliance with the Real ID program. In so doing,she called it an unfunded federal mandate that would stick states such as Arizona with a multibillion-dollar bill for the cost to develop and implement the series of new fraud-proof identification cards.

In a letter explaining her support for HB 2677,Napolitano cited a White House estimate that Real ID would cost at least $4 billion to implement. But thus far,she said,the federal government has only appropriated $90 million to help Arizona and other states offset those costs.

“My support of the Real ID Act is,and has always been,contingent upon adequate federal funding,”Napolitano wrote Tuesday. “Absent that,the Real ID Act becomes just another unfunded federal mandate.”

- The Arizona Republic,18 June 2008


The implication is that Napolitano would favor a national ID if it could be funded. What’s the likelihood of it being funded soon? Not very high. So Napolitano seems,first and foremost,like an effective manager who understands immigration policy and has been a bulwark against the crab barrel of restrictionist crazies in her state. Not the worst pick Obama could make.

This gives a considerably better shine to President-elect Obama’s selection of Gov. Napolitano for this very key post. While she’s apparently not opposed to Real ID on admirable philosophical grounds like her Democratic colleague Gov. Brian Schweitzer of Montana (who started a states’rights rebellion against Real ID and successfully stared down DHS chief Michael Chertoff),at least Gov. Napolitano understands that unfunded mandates on states are a gross overreach of federal authority. Hopefully Gov. Schweitzer,a fellow Western governor,can bend her ear a bit before she takes office.

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