News / USA

US Supreme Court Rejects Much of Arizona Immigration Law

x
The Supreme Court of the United States has struck down several key portions of a tough immigration law, enacted by the state of Arizona in 2010 to help police crackdown on illegal immigrants. The most controversial part of the law, however, which allows state police officers to check the immigration status of people they stop for other reasons was allowed to remain.

Although the Supreme Court's decision on Monday struck down three key parts of the law, the high court noted that its decision to uphold the so-called "show me your papers'' provision will likely lead to more legal challenges as it is implemented.

Based on what opponents of the law had to say on the steps of the Supreme Court on Monday, it is clear the fight is still far from over.

"This is a dark day for civil rights in America," said Deepak Bhargava.

Deepak Bhargava of the Center for Community Change says the upholding of the "show me your papers" clause would make many, including U.S. citizens, a target of Arizona's immigration crackdown efforts.

"The Supreme Court today upheld racial profiling by states that will have the impact of U.S. citizens being profiled and persecuted for no reason other than their race or the color of their skin," he said. "This is a disastrous decision for civil rights and civil liberties in America."
Surrounded by barbed wire, Jorge Mendez joins others from Promise Arizona to protest the upcoming U.S. Supreme Court decision on Arizona's immigration law SB1070 at a vigil set up in front of the Capitol in Phoenix,June 22, 2012.Surrounded by barbed wire, Jorge Mendez joins others from Promise Arizona to protest the upcoming U.S. Supreme Court decision on Arizona's immigration law SB1070 at a vigil set up in front of the Capitol in Phoenix,June 22, 2012.
x
Surrounded by barbed wire, Jorge Mendez joins others from Promise Arizona to protest the upcoming U.S. Supreme Court decision on Arizona's immigration law SB1070 at a vigil set up in front of the Capitol in Phoenix,June 22, 2012.
Surrounded by barbed wire, Jorge Mendez joins others from Promise Arizona to protest the upcoming U.S. Supreme Court decision on Arizona's immigration law SB1070 at a vigil set up in front of the Capitol in Phoenix,June 22, 2012.

But Sheriff Joe Arpaio, an outspoken proponent of the Arizona law, says local authorities have received thorough training on carrying out the identification checks.  After the Supreme Court ruling, he spoke in support of the state's need to carry out the "show me your papers" clause.

"It's to determine whether if you're in the country illegally and when you have suspicion," said Arpaio. "I think that's important, we've been doing it for four years.  I think it's a good ruling."

President Barack Obama says he is pleased with the Supreme Court's ruling, adding that what is clear from the decision is that the U.S. Congress must act on immigration reform.  But he voiced concern that the "show me your papers" provision of the law was not struck down.

Related video report by Chris Simkins Currently five other states have variations of the law similar to Arizona's and were waiting the Supreme Court ruling to begin applying their own solutions to the issue of immigration.

In a statement on the ruling Obama argued that a patchwork of state laws is not the solution to the country's broken immigration system.

Immigration is a hotly debated topic in this year's presidential election campaign.  President Barack Obama, a Democrat, and Mitt Romney, the likely Republican challenger, are courting Hispanic voters, who are deeply concerned about the issue.

Romney used the ruling to denounce Obama for the lack of an immigration plan. He said every state "has the duty - and the right  - to secure our borders" when the federal government "has failed to meet its responsibilities."

Supporters of the Arizona law say it was the federal government's inability to enforce national immigration laws that forced the state to adopt the legislation.

The Supreme Court expressed empathy for the state's concerns about immigration, but noted that it had overstepped its legal bounds with key portions of the law.

In the ruling, Justice Anthony Kennedy said that although "Arizona may have understandable frustrations" with its illegal immigration problems, the state could not pursue "policies that undermine federal law.”

The justices rejected three provisions of the Arizona law  - ones that make it a crime for immigrants without work permits to seek employment, make it a crime for immigrants to fail to carry registration documents, and authorize the police to arrest any immigrant they believe to be deportable.

Five of the Supreme Court's justices voted to strike down the three provisions; while the dissenting justices argued that the entire law or key parts of it should have been upheld.

You May Like

ASEAN Ministers Set to Push for South China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

Puerto Rico Defaults on $58M Debt Payment

Payment was due Saturday, default is first in country's 117 years as a United States possession More

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party 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.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs