High Court Backs Arizona Immigration Law That Punishes Businesses

Bill Mears, CNN, May 26, 2011

The Supreme Court has backed an Arizona law that punishes businesses hiring illegal immigrants, a law that opponents, including the Obama administration, say steps on traditional federal oversight over immigration matters.

{snip}

It was the first high court challenge to a variety of recent state laws cracking down on illegal immigrants, an issue that has become a political lightning rod.

The outcome could serve as a judicial warmup for a separate high-profile challenge to a more controversial Arizona immigration reform law working its way through lower courts. That statute would, among other things, give local police a greater role in arresting suspected illegal immigrants.

The hiring case turned on whether state law tramples on federal authority.

“Arizona has taken the route least likely to cause tension with federal law,” wrote Chief Justice John Roberts. “It relies solely on the federal government’s own determination of who is an unauthorized alien, and it requires Arizona employers to use the federal government’s own system for checking employee status.”

{snip}

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce filed a lawsuit against the state, arguing that federal law prohibits Arizona and other states from making E-Verify use mandatory. The group was supported by a variety of civil rights and immigration rights groups. The state countered that its broad licensing authority gives it the right to monitor businesses within its jurisdiction.

The Obama administration recommended a judicial review and sided with businesses and civil rights groups.

{snip}

In dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor noted E-Verify is a voluntary program and said criticism that the federal government is not doing enough to enforce the law is irrelevant.

“Permitting states to make use of E-Verify mandatory improperly puts states in the position of making decisions . . . that directly affect expenditure and depletion of federal resources,” she wrote. Justices Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg also dissented.

Justice Elena Kagan did not participate in the case, since she had been the administration’s solicitor general last year when the case was being appealed to the high court.

{snip}

The hiring case is Chamber of Commerce v. Whiting (09-115).

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  • E Pluribus Pluribus

    “In dissent, [Democrat appointees] Justice Sonia Sotomayor . . . Justices Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg . . . Justice Elena Kagan did not participate in the case”

    In support of Arizona’s E-Verify law, Republican appointees: John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, Anton Scalia.

    5 GOP appointees for the Arizona E-Verify legislation

    3 Democrat appointees against the Arizona E-Verify legislation

    =====

    There are several regular posters on this site who are fond of asserting there is no difference between the two political parties in resistance to the rapid replacement of the white population via mass immigration. That’s nonsense as this critical ruling vividly illustrates.

    Yes, earlier GOP presidents were less attuned to the vast powers the Supreme Court sought to exercise and several of these GOP presidents appointed genuine enemies of the Constitution (if not the “Living Constitution”) to the high court.

    Together with predictably left wing Democrat appointees to the Supreme Court these justices were able to radically transform the nation in myriad destructive and unconstitutional ways in recent decades.

    But the era of GOP innocence about the nature of the Supreme Court is over. The Republican Party and the Democratic Party have markedly different goals as regards federal judges. This decision is an example.

  • Dario

    How can the “Wise Latina” say that the federal government’s inability to do its own job is “irrelevant”?

  • Question Diversity

    This is good news for SB 1070, at least when the constitutional proceedings make SCOTUS, assuming SCOTUS has the same nine members when it does. What Roberts is basically saying is that as long as state level immigration laws rely on the Federal definition of legal alien, illegal alien and citizen, and do not attempt to create a status in that stead any different from the Federal definition, then the state can proscribe punishment for violating these laws.

    However, what might be different in this compared to SB 1070 is that this punishes business owners (presumably American citizens and state residents) for engaging in an immigration crime, not the illegal aliens themselves. SCOTUS might not think their own ruling today as perfect precedent for when SB 1070 gets on their desks.

  • Anonymous

    Of course Sonia Sotomayor is gonna vote against anything that goes against her “people.” Have we forgotten how she as a judge voted on promoting a black man as chief for FDNY even though he failed to obtain a passing grade. Oh yea, and how about the comment that she made about how a Latino would make a better judge than a white man! How in the world can someone like this, even be considered let alone nominated (by Obama of course) to serve in the highest ranking court in this country! Any White man does not have a chance with this racist.

  • LA Refugee

    More stupidly from our betters. Why would any immigrunt (sp) want to be a citizen? They have it made as it is. Being in the system under your real identity could be a serious inconvenience if you have 20 more.

  • Tom S.

    We need to pray that one of the more conservative judges on the Supreme Court doesn’t die or retire during that muslims term in office! The result of that would be eventual civil war in this country.

  • John Engelman

    1 — E Pluribus Pluribus wrote at 6:20 PM on May 26:

    “In dissent, [Democrat appointees] Justice Sonia Sotomayor … Justices Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg … Justice Elena Kagan did not participate in the case”

    In support of Arizona’s E-Verify law, Republican appointees: John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, Anton Scalia. . .

    There are several regular posters on this site who are fond of asserting there is no difference between the two political parties in resistance to the rapid replacement of the white population via mass immigration. That’s nonsense as this critical ruling vividly illustrates.

    ——

    The U.S. Chamber of Commerce filed a lawsuit against the state.

    – Bill Mears, CNN, May 26, 2011

    ——

    Republicans do not always protect business interests, but they usually do.

  • John Engelman

    The Supreme Court makes the right decision when it decides not to overturn popular legislation, especially legislation that has been in effect for a long time.

    I dislike the power of the Supreme Court. Candidates I vote for often lose elections. Nevertheless, I trust the will of the voters more than the will of any elite minority, whether it is based on wealth or intellect.

    The Supreme Court is a loose cannon that can roll in any direction, causing much damage.

    The Supreme Court particularly lacks wisdom on issues of crime and punishment. Almost without exception Supreme Court justices have spent their lives in safe neighborhoods. They have never been the victims of serious crimes.

  • Anonymous

    Behold another step in the phenomena I like to call “musical aliens”. With this law in effect, it will become impossible for any illegal to get a job. And most mexicans will refuse to go through E-Verify because they have warrants and know the result will be their arrest, legal alien or not.

    Result will be 90%+ of mexicans fleeing Arizona this year…..and jumping to another state….bankrupting them. They will have a choice, pass similar laws to force out the mexicans or lose everything. Each state that does so will ramp up the pressure on the others. The last states, liberal bastions like california, will refuse….and go bankrupt. Once welfare payouts become zero, as the money runs out, mexicans will leave there too. Mexicans simply do not….steadfastly REFUSE to provide for themselves. No welfare means leave or starve.

    I don’t care how many psychopaths california lets out of prison to save money, they simply cannot afford to have their welfare population double, triple, then double again. They have months, not years before ALL of their checks simply bounce. Watch as the problem instantly comes to a head as non-whites elected to office loot the last of the money, once it becomes clear what’s happening.

  • ATBOTL

    “The U.S. Chamber of Commerce filed a lawsuit against the state…”

    The Chamber of Commerce needs to be held accountable for it’s treasonous actions.

  • Anonymous

    they only throw a small bone to make you think you are are still in the game.

  • E Pluribus Pluribus

    John Engelman: “Republicans do not always protect business interests, but they usually do.”

    Republicans certainly do not “protect business interests” when it comes to votes on immigration. The 5-to-3 GOP-to-Democrat Supreme Court vote on Arizona’s E-Verify law is but one immensely important illustration.

    ANY major vote to restrict immigration in Congress or in any state legislature is going to show lopsided GOP support and massive Democrat resistance. NumberUSA, the nation’s foremost immigration restrictionist lobby, keeps detailed report cards on the voting records of every member of Congress. At the link below click on your state and see which senators and representatives have grades of “A” or “B”. With a few exceptions, these will be Republicans:

    http://tinyurl.com/ylog9qm

    Likewise, see which senators and representatives have a “D” and “F” grade. These, with few exceptions, will be Democrats. Why anyone would imply, suggest or assert otherwise is a mystery.

  • WR the elder

    Golly, how many of us are surprised that wise Latina and La Raza member Sonia Sotomayor is opposed to states enforcing immigration law? She is easily the worst member of the Supreme Court.

  • ATBOTL

    “Likewise, see which senators and representatives have a “D” and “F” grade. These, with few exceptions, will be Democrats. Why anyone would imply, suggest or assert otherwise is a mystery.”

    Because if we are to stop white dispossession in America, we cannot be satisfied with the current weak and fickle opposition to illegal immigration in the GOP. We need something a LOT stronger, or it’s all over.

  • Michael C. Scott

    Good news, like the Second-Amendment ruling last year, as the SCOTUS almost never reverses an earlier ruling.

    As Anonymous (9) explained, the pressure is on the rest of the western US, and it will increase as additional states pass mandatory E-Verify laws. I think it may well take less time than you think, however, before California sees the light, for three reasons: 1. California is already so bankrupt, that their state and municipal bonds are junk. They simply can’t afford to provide more services and incarceration for additional illegal aliens. 2. Accelerating white flight out of the state will exaccerbate this fiscal disaster. 3. State taxes on corporate income are already so high that companies are moving out, so increased corporate taxes will provide no remedy.

  • Bobby

    Naturally, as natural as a baby’s smile in fact, the leftists on the court, voted against the best interests of American citizens.

  • steve

    Ron Paul, who is likewise opposed to e-verify, is “a liberal”?

    This isn’t a left/right issue. And insisting it is plays right into the hands of the oligarchs who benefit from cheap labor. BOTH parties know which side their bread is buttered on.