U.S. Supreme Court to Decide Validity of Arizona Immigration Law
The U.S. Supreme Court has announced it will review Arizona’s controversial restrictive immigration law that has inspired other states to pass laws cracking down on illegal immigrants. Arizona v. United States (2011).
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) signed the law, S.B. 1070, in April 2010, describing it as a way for her state to “solve a crisis we did not create and the federal government has refused to fix.”
The U.S. Department of Justice immediately challenged the law, and the federal District Court for the District of Arizona enjoined it from taking effect on the ground that Arizona was trying to enforce immigration policy, a role that belongs solely to the federal government.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the District Court’s preliminary injunction, thereby preventing the following elements of the law from taking effect: making it a state crime to be in the country illegally and failing to register with the federal government; making it illegal to seek work or work when not authorized; requiring state and local officers to determine the status of someone arrested, stopped, or detained if they believe the individual might be in the country unlawfully; and allowing warrantless arrest of anyone who they have probable cause to believe might have violated laws that would make them deportable under federal law.
Justice Elena Kagan will not take part in the case, presumably because she worked on the issue while she was Obama’s solicitor general.