Which States Have the Harshest Immigration Laws? (Interactive Map)


Written by Ann Garcia

On April 25 the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a landmark case, State of Arizona v. United States of America. By the end of June the Court will likely rule on whether states like Arizona have the authority to enact their own immigration enforcement laws instead of following federal regulations.

If the Court gives a green light to Arizona’s “attrition through enforcement” strategy, which aims to make life so harsh for undocumented immigrants and their families that they “self-deport,” and allows S.B. 1070 and its progeny to be implemented, the nation will return to a time of deep division, likely cleaved once again along regional lines. Some states will pass welcoming laws and others restrictive ones.

With this series of maps we aim to convey the implications of the Court’s decision, which are significant and will have profound implications for all people living in Arizona and Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, and Utah, where similar measures have passed, as well as for the country as a whole.

What is at stake is the unity of the nation and the preservation of our core values. Let’s take a look at what our nation looks like today and what it could look like with a Supreme Court decision in favor or against Arizona style legislation.

This post was originally published by the Center for American Progress.


Related Stories:

US vs. Arizona: Preview Of The Arguments

Anti-Immigrant and Anti-Choice Laws Popping Up In Same States

3 Bits of Background for SCOTUS Immigration Arguments


Photo from kevinbondelli via flickr


Mia B
Past Member 6 months ago

thank you for sharing

Elizabeth Weisleder

Bill E. Negative immigration?! Where do you LIVE??? My last 30 years in Fl. would FLOOR you
Wow - talk about naive !!

Elizabeth Weisleder

I am usually a kind person. Except re:the Illegal Aliens issue. They sneak over the border & immediately have "anchor babies" who are then considered Americans & the entire family can go on public assistance including Welfare,Food Stamps, Housing, Childcare,Education,,etc. I am 62 & have worked for 45 years here - my home in the USA.. When I had to go on Social Security Disability 4 months ago I had quite an 'eye-opener'. People can't get Medicare until they have been on Disability for 2 years !! As my check is over $900., I can't get Medicaid or Food Stamps. But illegal aliens can although they have never pd. TAXES of any kind EVER. Don't believe me? Go to Social Services. They have a big sign and brochures in various languages stating "IF you do NOT have a Green Card or Social Security card, we will HELP you obtain one. We do NOT exchange information with any other agency"(like immigration). ALL while sitting in a room full of Mexicans who don't speak English. Please educate yourself before judging/making comments..ALL I wanted was Medicaid to help pay my medical expenses - MD & 10 medications. DENIED.Sound bitter?. I am.I'm single & ALL the money I receive is my Soc.Sec.Disability check.W/O medical care: Testing is OUT of the question; 1 rx I tried to get yesterday was $300.so I was unable to buy it.I pay for all my generic meds. I can't try NEW meds. I was ill for 4 years & reduced to trying part-time work w/o benefits. Took 4 yrs.before I could

Rin S.
Rin S7 years ago

Everybody deserves a better life, including immigrants. People have no compassion these days, and couldn't care less about others in the world.

Deza M.
Deza M.7 years ago

They should come up with a better solution for immigrants that are coming to the U.S and then there would be less to worry about. We should be the land of dreams and freedom which is what immigrants coming here are looking for.

KS Goh
KS Goh7 years ago

Thanks for the article.

A N M.
anne M7 years ago

What I'm wondering is why all this gets somehow connected to the German language. Germany has one of the most liberal immigration laws and, in fact, had some of the most liberal immigration laws all along except for a short period during the infamous 3rd Reich 80 years ago. Then again, even the short-lived 3rd Reich doesn't come close to the atrocities that mark centuries of British and American history including genocide, slavery, apartheid, and discrimination.

Allan Yorkowitz
.7 years ago

I can't understand why California has not followed suit. Southern California's school system may as well be a part of Mexico's.
With Obama's literal joking at what is happening to Arizona, this state was moved to do what it has to do. In my opinion? Sue the federal government for lack of immigration security.Embarrass this administration for its lack of concern to what is happening in SW America.
By the way, did he get citizenship for his illegal aunt and uncle?

Linda T.
Linda T7 years ago

The disturbing part of all this is the inaction in congress over immigration laws. We need a comprehensive immigration law. We need to protect our boarders like every other nation does. When will Washington act?

Susan Oliver
Susan Cytko7 years ago

I thought you were the home of the free.