SCOTUS says Arizona police may check immigration status
Other provisions of Arizona law struck down.
The US Supreme Court has delivered its ruling on Arizona's anti-illegal immigration law. In a 5-2 split decision, the justices upheld one of the four provisions of the law. The court has ruled that police may ask to check the immigration status of people they stop, but seeking work while in the country illegally will not constitute a crime.
The Supreme Court has rendered its decision, largely striking down most of Arizona's anti-illegal immigration law.
Chief Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the majority decision and was joined by Roberts, Bader-Ginsburg, Breyer, and Sotomayor. Justice Elena Kagan was recused.
Anotnin Scalia and Clarence Thomas both upheld the entire law in their rulings. Justice Altio said he would have struck down only one of the provisions.
Ultimately, the decision appears to be grounded in what each justice feels is within the realm of a state's power. Kennedy wrote "Arizona may have understandable frustrations with the problems caused by illegal immigration while that process continues, but the state may not pursue policies that undermine federal law."
However Scalia took a different view writing, "If securing its territory in this fashion is not within the power of Arizona, we should cease referring to it as a sovereign state."
The ruling now clears the last roadblock preventing enforcement of at least one provision of the law. Until now, the provisions have been blocked by lower courts. Arizona Governor, Jan Brewer referred to the decision as "a victory for the rule of law." She added in a statement, "I am confident our officers are prepared to carry out this law responsibly and lawfully."
Arizona has already started training officers to enforce the law without racial profiling. Other states have followed Arizona's example and have modeled tough anti-illegal immigration laws of their own.
However, in their various rulings the justices revealed they were concerned about the states enforcing greater penalties than those envisioned by Congress for illegal immigration.
Recently, the immigration issue has become a hot topic in the presidential race with Obama making overtures to illegal immigrants, promising an estimated 800,000 young illegals, brought into the country as children, work permits and protection from deportation. And although Obama will permit them to take US jobs, they will not be entitled to US citizenship.
© 2012, Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
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Keywords: Arizona, immigration, illegal, supreme court, justices, ruling
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