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Immigration Ruling Could Have Wide Impact

Immigration Ruling Could Have Wide Impact
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The Supreme Court’s ruling in Arizona v. United States doesn’t just impact people in Arizona. It sets a new constitutional precedent for what actions can be taken by other states with regard to immigration.

After Arizona’s ill-fated S.B. 1070 was passed, other states under Republican-controlled legislatures tried to copy the law for their own states. They were helped in this by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which had supported the legislation on behalf of its private prison management members.

While significant legislative action was undertaken in over a dozen states, five succeeded in passing draconian, Arizona-style anti-immigrant laws. Here’s a look at those five states, and what Monday’s ruling could hold for them.


Alabama’s H.B. 56 went even further than Arizona’s S.B. 1070 in attacking immigrants. Written by Kansas Attorney General and anti-immigration zealot Kris Kobach, the law prohibits undocumented immigrants from receiving any kind of state benefits at the state or local level, prohibits undocumented immigrants from attending publicly-funded colleges, and requires public schools to make a determination as to whether students are in the country legally. The law prohibits landlords from renting to undocumented immigrants, makes hiring undocumented immigrants a crime, and makes the firing or refusal to hire a legal Alabama resident a crime, so long as a company employs an undocumented worker. Additionally, the law includes provisions similar to S.B. 1070 with regard to police detention and employment.

While the law was upheld in large part by a district judge on September 29, 2011, many of the law’s provisions have been thrown into question by the Supreme Court’s ruling. The court struck down provisions in the Arizona law that made it illegal for undocumented immigrants to apply for work.

Alabama House Majority Leader Micky Hammon, R-Decatur, tried to strike a positive note in a statement reported by USA Today, in which he said the “real teeth of Arizona’s law” had survived the court’s ruling. While that is debatable, the court’s ruling seems to put many of H.B. 56′s most draconian provisions in jeoparday; it’s hard to imagine a court saying that individual states cannot make it a crime for undocumented workers to look for a job, but they can make it a crime to rent an apartment to them.

We shouldn’t have to wait long for an answer; the law’s legality had already been appealed to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, which has already temporarily blocked most provisions of the law. The court had been waiting to make a final ruling until after the Supreme Court’s Arizona ruling.

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Image Credit: Jim Shen

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3:39PM PST on Feb 5, 2013

Thank you for article.

3:38PM PST on Feb 5, 2013

Thank you for article.

3:38PM PST on Feb 5, 2013

Thank you for article.

3:37PM PST on Feb 5, 2013

Thank you for article.

5:12PM PST on Nov 21, 2012

No one is complaining about the legal immigrant, it is the illegal alien that is causing the problem. The stupid undocumented worker that is here taking jobs from american's and legal immigrants of all nationalities.

2:40PM PST on Nov 14, 2012

Here's the new official white house petition you can sign to fix the immigration problem!

3:16PM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

I live in B.C. Canada now not 2 offend anyone we have thousands & thousands of Asian's over 65 flocking to B.C. Why u ask well r "Government" has a ruling that u can collect Old Age Pension Benifits here even if u have never worked a nano second in B.C. This ruling has hurt so many that have contributed to OAPB 4 years & years & the Government is surprised we r running out of $$. Please give us a break!!

9:16AM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

Charli, I wish I could send you a million Green stars, you too make a lot of sense and as I have always said the illegals are hurting the legal immigrant into our country.

So people say the laws like Arizona's allow the police to profile, that is totally wrong and is against the law. Most of the states that have passed new immigration laws are copies of the Federal law, and the reason for this is because DOJ Holder and Obama will not enforce the Federal Law as they are afraid they will loose the illegal voting illegally.

9:10AM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

Lynne, you have made a very sensible and rational comment. Now if only the writers of Care2 stories would learn from your thoughtful style.

12:18AM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

If you are going to move to another country you must have the following
A basic knowlege of the language
A job to go to
Insurance for medical and dental care.
Enough money to leave with if all doesn't work out.
No person without citizenship should be able to claim welfare or state benefits.

Immigrants should not drain the facilities that natural born residents of the country have built up, the Uk is a glowing testament to that, look at the state it is in.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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