Supreme Court Strikes Down Nearly All Of Arizona Immigration Law
SB 1070 has been at the center of a legal battle over immigration law since 2010. Ever since then, the Obama administration has made every effort to fight back against the law while conservatives have continuously insisted that it is perfectly legal. But on Monday, the conservative anti-immigration and anti-hispanic dream came crashing down in an epic form when the Supreme Court struck down nearly all of the Arizona law.
In what is clearly a huge victory for the Obama administration and the Hispanic population, the US Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that most of the controversial law is incompatible with federal law. Three out of four pieces of the law were struck down, but the provision allowing police to check the immigration status of people they stop was upheld. However, the court left open the opportunity for the measure to be challenged again because as opponents of the law claim, it could lead to racial profiling.
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer declared total victory for the 10th Amendment, overlooking the fact that her law has been gutted and could be struck down entirely in the near future. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had a completely different take on the ruling. In a statement, Reid declared victory for the Obama administration and slammed Mitt Romney in the same breath.
“With three out of the four provisions being struck down, the ruling shows that the Obama administration was right to challenge this law, which was not just ill-advised but also unconstitutional. Looking ahead to the immigration debate, it is disturbing that Mitt Romney called the unconstitutional Arizona law a ‘model’ for immigration reform. Laws that legalize discrimination are not compatible with our nation’s ideals and traditions of equal rights, and the idea that such an unconstitutional law should serve as a ‘model’ for national reform is far outside the American mainstream.”
The fact that a conservative court took Brewer, Arizona, and the rest of the pro-discrimination Republicans to the proverbial woodshed doesn’t bode well for states that have copied the Arizona law such as Alabama and Georgia, where anti-immigration laws have caused chaos in the agriculture industry and immigrants both legal and undocumented live in fear. Clearly, this ruling isn’t the end of the Republican war against immigrants, but it is a giant step in the right direction.