Wednesday Sep 19, 201212:05 AM GMT
Judge OKs Arizona show-me-your-papers law
Wed Sep 19, 2012 12:2AM
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Protesters in Arizona express their anger over S.B. 1070, the state's harsh anti-immigrant enforcement bill.

 

A judge has ruled that police in Arizona can immediately start enforcing the most contentious section of the state's immigration law, marking the first time officers can carry out a requirement that officers, while enforcing other laws, question the immigration status of those suspected of being in the country illegally.

 

The decision on Tuesday by U.S. district judge Susan Bolton is the latest milestone in a two-year legal battle over the requirement. It culminated in a U.S. Supreme Court decision in June that upheld the provision on the grounds that it doesn't conflict with federal law.

 

Opponents who call the requirement the "show me your papers" provision responded to the supreme court decision by asking Bolton to block the requirement on different grounds, arguing that it would lead to systematic racial profiling and unreasonably long detentions of Latinos if it's enforced.

 

Other less controversial parts of the law have been in effect since July 2010, such as minor changes to the state's 2005 immigrant smuggling law and a ban on state and local government agencies from restricting the enforcement of federal immigration law. But those provisions have gotten little, if any, use since they were put into effect.

 

Arizona's law was passed in 2010 amid voter frustration with the state's role as the busiest illegal entry point into the country. Five states - Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, South Carolina and Utah - have adopted variations on Arizona's law. Guardian

 

HIGHLIGHTS

 

The measure, which is part of a broader law to combat illegal immigration in the state bordering Mexico, requires police to check the immigration status of people they stop and suspect are in the country illegally. Reuters

 

Among the opponents of the law was the Obama administration, which filed a challenge that led to the most controversial parts of the statute being put on hold. Huffington Post

 

The ruling upholding the "show me your papers" provision - also known as Section 2B - comes after a two-year legal battle initiated by the Obama administration which argues that it would lead to systematic racial profiling. globalpost.com

 

Lawyers for Brewer urged the judge to let the requirement go into effect. They argued that the law's opponents were merely speculating in their racial profiling claims, that police have received training to avoid discriminatory practices and that officers must have "reasonable suspicion" that a person is in the country illegally to trigger the requirement. Guardian

 

ISH/SM

 

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