Invasion Clause: Article IV, Section 4

Invasion: The incoming or first attack of anything hurtful.

“When our U.S. borders are not secure, it becomes easier for all sorts of illegal activities to take place in our nation’s communities and neighborhoods. More drug use and crime result; illegal harboring of undocumented foreign nationals becomes more of a problem; crimes are committed against them, and more. Quality of life in our neighborhoods is diminished, and the safety of all people living here is jeopardized.

There are an estimated 8 to 12 million illegal aliens present in the United States, approximately 40 to 50 percent of whom crossed our borders without inspection.

In 1994, six states filed suit in federal courts charging the federal government had failed to meet its obligation under Article IV Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution to “protect each (state) against invasion … .” Each state sought reimbursement for money expended by them for medical care and for costs associated with the criminal prosecution and incarceration of illegal aliens.

“Although the federal government may have the luxury of abdicating its constitutional duty to protect Arizona’s borders, Arizona cannot solve the problems that this abdication causes by following the federal government’s example and abdicating its duty to prosecute and incarcerate illegal aliens who commit felonies within Arizona’s unprotected borders,” Arizona argued in its high court appeal.

“The situation in California long ago passed the point where reasonable minds could differ: the overwhelming illegal entry across California’s borders is nothing short of an invasion,” that state said. In all cases, their suits were dismissed as being political questions and not legal ones.

– Robert Park, Prescott, AZ
U.S. Border Patrol/INS (1951-1979) Founder of Article IV, Section 4 Foundation


1. U.S. Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) (letter to constituents), February 14, 2000.

2. “Justices reject state bid to recoup costs of illegals,” The Arizona Republic, October 7, 1997.

3. “Court Rejects Claim that U.S. is Liable for Immigrant Costs,” Los Angeles Times, October 7, 1997.

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