Key Parts of Alabama Immigration Law Upheld

Stephen Dinan, Washington Times, September 28, 2011

A federal judge on Wednesday said Alabama law enforcement officers can try to check the immigration status of those they suspect are in the country illegally, but blocked other parts of the state’s new crackdown law, which is the toughest in the country.

U.S. District Judge Sharon Lovelace Blackburn said Alabama is allowed to tread anywhere that federal law doesn’t explicitly prohibit states from acting, which means the state can enact its own penalties for immigrants who fail to carry their registration papers, and can enable its state and local police to check immigration status.

“Local officials have some inherent authority to assist in the enforcement of federal immigration law, so long as the local official ‘cooperates’ with the federal government,” the judge said in her 115-page decision.

And in a key part of her ruling, Judge Blackburn said the state can require schools to determine the legal status of students’ parents, though children of illegal immigrants may not be denied attendance.

But the judge did block four parts of Alabama’s law that she said go beyond what federal law allows: One provision created a civil action against employers who hired illegal immigrants over legal workers; another banned illegal immigrants from applying for a job; one made it a crime to harbor an illegal immigrant; and the other prohibited businesses from claiming tax deductions on wages paid to illegal immigrants.

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley called the decision vindication for the state, and promised to appeal those parts of the law that were blocked.

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Her ruling puts her at odds with other federal courts that overturned Arizona’s crackdown law, passed last year. In that case, a district judge and then a three-judge appeals court panel both ruled that the federal government has primary authority in immigration law.

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In addition to its law enforcement provisions, the Alabama law requires all businesses to use E-Verify, a national database run by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services that allows employers to check potential hires’ Social Security numbers to see if they are authorized to work.

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That issue is now back before Congress, where a House committee last week approved legislation that would make E-Verify mandatory across the country.

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  • June Warren

    I was quite angry to see a protest by a small group of University of Alabama students about the immigration law. What these kids don’t realize is that last year a young woman, who would have been an honors freshman this semester, was killed by a drunken illegal Mexican who was speeding at over 100 mph. He ran a light and broadsided the girl’s car about 5 blocks from our home.

    Several years ago another member of the UA community, a very liberal professor in the Women’s Studies Department, was decapitated in Tampa, FL, when another illegal Mexican dropped a concrete block from an overpass onto her car as it drove along I-75.

    There is good news however. Last night on the local news the owner of a Latino “tienda”, a small grocery store, announced she was closing since half her customers were illegals and most had left the state. Apparently she is leaving along with them.

    Adios!

  • Western Man

    While individual courts and judges vary, and while the

    role of the judiciary in the Obamacare battle has thus far been

    a positive one — overall we have seen a relentless, decades-long war waged

    by both the Federal executive and the judicial (state and federal)

    branches of government, against the desires of the Anerican

    people — as expressed by state and local laws, ballot measures and

    regulations attempting to stem the tides of un-freedom and of foreign and domestic third-world invasion transforming our country. In addition to

    the wars by the Federal government and leftist institutions of all stripes

    against states, traditional American individual rights and culture and the enforcement of our national borders, these same culprits are also attempting massive, enforced and unconstitutional transfers of wealth and political power from solvent red states to economical sinkholes in floundering blue ones, and from White native-born Americans to all others (especially if they belong to low IQ and/or ‘protected’ groups).

    And concretely, I learned from a recent NYT article that the Feds are

    harassing Arizona not only about their immigration law enforcement bill,

    but even about local educational practices, such as attempts to bar

    heavily accented teachers from teaching remedial English to

    Mestizo children. In that article, the Federal Education Dept official quoted on the matter, is herself a foreigner (Middle Eastern, judging by the name).

    Whatever happened to ‘consent of the governed’ as

    a precondition to governmental powers in the USA? (rhetorical question…)

  • Question Diversity

    “Local officials have some inherent authority to assist in the enforcement of federal immigration law, so long as the local official ‘cooperates’ with the federal government,” the judge said in her 115-page decision.

    This is a really profound part of her opinion. If taken as judicial precedent, and that’s not always a given, it could strike spears through the hearts of two things: (1) Obama’s administrative amnesty scheme, and (2) Any Federal attempt to limit immigration enforcement to itself.

    No judge who has ruled on the Arizona SB 1070 matter thus far has made such a profound statement.

  • Steve

    In Vermont recently a State Trooper stopped a vehicle for speeding and discovered 2 illegal Mexicans in the back seat. He called the Border Patrol and they took them into custody. Now the Governor and other liberals are upset that the trooper was guilty of “racial profiling”. I wonder, would they feel this way if, instead of Mexican workers, these folks were Middle East terrorists? Amazing, in the age of terrorism some people still get upset when the police do their job, which includes protecting the public.

  • Anonymous

    There you go!

    (And some posters can only bitterly complain more…)

    Look , this is a small victory in a series of thousands we must win, to get a future back!

    ARE YOU LESS OF A MAN THAN THE DELUDED, POT- ADDLED HIPPIES OF THE CLASS OF ’68?

    Are you?

    If so, dig your grave, and jump in.

    If you are at least equal to those energetic but profoundly foolish people two generations ago, that brought down a society, then YOU, TOO, can bring down the decrepit, deluded, sick society those idiots plastered up on a weak and unsustainable framework of feel- good lies, and populated with dim-witted third worlders, unable to tie their own shoes without massive white help.

    I mean it, the crying here is making me sick. I used to do it too. Now I see that’s worse than a dead end.

    Here’s SOMETHING to celebrate, and follow up on.

    There’s so much more…like the total awareness, in all corners, that Obama is a lousy president, that immigration is the death of the country, that no one wants to see Mestizos anymore, that black flash mobs are an atrocity…the list keeps on going.

    Our hour is arrived.

    Are you going to sob through it?

  • Miss Whitey

    This is very good news to me as I actively fight against illegal immigration and I need to see that we are making some progress on this issue.

    Also, I am glad to see that Governor Bentley will be appealing the parts of the law that the judge blocked. The stricter the law, the better in this case.

    Now, if we can just overrule Plyler vs. Doe, the taxpayers everywhere will save a lot of money and the illegals will really leave our country in droves.

  • Simon Jester

    SCOTUS will likely uphold all (or at least most) of both Arizona and Alabama’s law.

    They don’t call the Ninth Circuit “the Ninth Circus” for nothing.

  • margaret

    The anti immigration law is already taking effect.

    10/01/11

    BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (AP) — Hispanic students have started vanishing from Alabama public schools in the wake of a court ruling that upheld the state’s tough new law cracking down on illegal immigration.

    Education officials say scores of immigrant families have withdrawn their children from classes or kept them home this week, afraid that sending the kids to school would draw attention from authorities.

    There are no precise statewide numbers. But several districts with large immigrant enrollments — from small towns to large urban districts — reported a sudden exodus of children of Hispanic parents, some of whom told officials they planned to leave the state to avoid trouble with the law, which requires schools to check students’ immigration status.