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Latino Daily News

Thursday December 9, 2010

Supreme Court Hearing Constitutionality of Arizona’s 2007 Immigration Law

Yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court began to hear arguments on the legal challenges to Arizona’s 2007 immigration law that punishes employers for knowingly hiring undocumented workers.  The Legal Arizona Workers Act “requires employers [to use a federal database] to verify the eligibility of new workers” and failure to do so can result in the revocation or suspension of business licenses.

The Legal Arizona Workers Act “requires employers [to use a federal database] to verify the eligibility of new workers” and failure to do so can result in the revocation or suspension of business licenses.

The National Immigration Law Center, the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund,  and the the U.S. Chamber of Chamber (USCC) filed suit against Arizona for this immigration law.  Federal government officials say immigration law is a federal matter and Arizona’s law is outside the scope of their responsibilities.  Some Justices have commented that the law could lead to anti-Hispanic discrimination.

Outside the courthouse, Arizona’s controversial governor, Jan Brewer, had this to say:

“Well the bottom line is that we believe that if the government isn’t going to do the job, that Arizona is going to do the job, and we are faced with a crisis. And in regards to today’s hearing, certainly we do issue licenses, we do do that, and if we giveth, we can taketh away.”

With Justice Elena Kagan declining to participate, the vote appears to be split 4-4, and should that be the final vote the appeals court ruling that upheld the 2007 law before it was brought to the Supreme Court would be “automatically affirmed” and the law would remain in effect.