News / USA

US Democratic Lawmakers Welcome Ruling Blocking Parts of Arizona Immigration Law

Cindy Saine

Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and other Democratic lawmakers held a news conference on Thursday to welcome this week's federal court ruling blocking the most controversial parts of Arizona's new immigration law.  More than 100 Democratic lawmakers are sponsoring a comprehensive immigration reform bill, but no Republicans have joined them.

Democratic Representative Luis Gutierrez of Illinois told reporters that he is delighted with the ruling blocking parts of the new Arizona immigration law, which went into effect on Thursday.  

Gutierrez said he agrees with the Obama administration that immigration is a federal and not a state issue.

"The Constitution of the United States clearly mandates the federal government's responsibility when it comes to the implementation of immigration policy," said Luis Gutierrez.

Congressman Gutierrez had this rebuke to many Republican leaders and activists of the grassroots Tea Party movement who have voiced support for the tough Arizona law, citing America's Founding Fathers who wrote the U.S. Constitution.

"For those who speak frequently about the Founding Fathers, you know, the Constitution is not the menu that you can pick at lunch or dinner, and decide what it is you are going to approve of," he said. "The Constitution is the Constitution, and it was upheld yesterday [Wednesday, 7/28/10]."

U.S. Judge Susan Bolton issued a temporary injunction against parts of the law on Wednesday, including a measure that requires police to check the immigration status of any person they stop for a violation and whom they suspect might be in the country illegally.  Opponents of the law say that would be discriminatory because it would encourage police to stop and question anyone who looks Hispanic - the ethnic group that makes up the largest percentage of illegal immigrants in the United States.

The Obama administration filed a lawsuit against the state of Arizona to keep the law from being enforced, arguing that under the U.S. Constitution, immigration is a responsibility of the national government.

Arizona's Republican Governor Jan Brewer vows to appeal the court's injunction, saying that she will take the fight all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court, if necessary.  Brewer and other Arizona officials say the influx of illegal immigrants from Mexico has led to an increase in crime in the state.

On the floor of the House of Representatives, Republican Lamar Smith of Texas criticized the Obama administration for failing to secure the U.S. border with Mexico, and the news media for bias on the immigration issue.

"The ruling will be seen by Arizonans and the vast majority of Americans who support the law as just another example of this administration's failure to deal with illegal immigration and border security," said Lamar Smith. "Like the administration, the national media have shown a clear bias against the Arizona law."

The Chairwoman of the Hispanic Congressional Caucus, Democrat Nydia Velazquez of New York, pointed out that 100 Democratic House members are co-sponsoring a comprehensive immigration reform bill and that no Republicans have endorsed the measure.

"So we urge Republicans to stop playing politics and start supporting a true comprehensive immigration reform bill," said Nydia Velazquez. "The American people want real solutions."

Most Republican leaders object to parts of the legislation that provide a pathway to citizenship for the estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States.

Some Republican lawmakers accuse Democrats of playing politics, saying they are supporting the immigration reform legislation to win Hispanic voters.

With congressional elections in November, analysts say it is unlikely that Congress will take up the controversial issue of immigration reform any time soon.   

You May Like

Reports of Mass Murder on Mediterranean Smuggler’s Boat

Boat sailed from Libya with 750 migrants aboard and arrived in Italy with 569 More

Video New Thailand Hotline Targets Misbehaving Monks

Officials say move aims to restore country’s image of Buddhism, tarnished by recent high profile scandals such as opulent lifestyle, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as child sex abuse More

Study: Dust from Sahara Helped Form Bahama Islands

What does the Sahara have in common with a Caribbean island? Quite a lot, researchers say More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid