United States v. Arizona
In a not-so surprising ruling, The Honrable Susan R. Bolton granted a preliminary injunction holding up key parts of the Arizona Immigration bill. As you recall, the bill forces local law enforcement into acting as proxies for federal law enforcement. There’s only one problem, the states don’t have the authority. Under LONG standing precedent, immigration is the sole province of the federal government:
The Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution makes federal law “the supreme law of the land.” U.S. Const. art. VI, cl. 2. The Supreme Court has consistently ruled that the federal government has broad and exclusive authority to regulate immigration, supported by both enumerated and implied constitutional powers. While holding that the “[p]ower to regulate immigration is unquestionably exclusively a federal power,” the Supreme Court concluded that not every state enactment “which in any way deals with aliens is a regulation of immigration and thus per se preempted by this constitutional power, whether latent or exercised.” De Canas v. Bica, 424 U.S. 351, 354-355 (1976).
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Requiring Arizona law enforcement officials and agencies to determine the immigration status of every person who is arrested burdens lawfully-present aliens because their liberty will be restricted while their status is checked. Given the large number of people who are technically “arrested” but never booked into jail or perhaps even transported to a law enforcement facility, detention time for this category of arrestee will certainly be extended during an immigration status verification. (See Escobar, et al. v. City of Tucson, et al., No. CV 10-249-TUC-SRB, Doc. 9, City of Tucson’s Answer & Cross-cl., ¶ 38 (stating that during fiscal year 2009, Tucson used the cite-and-release procedure provided by A.R.S. § 13-3903 to “arrest” and immediately release 36,821 people).) Under Section 2(B) of S.B. 1070, all arrestees will be required to prove their immigration status to the satisfaction of state authorities, thus increasing the intrusion of police presence into the lives of legally-present aliens (and even United States citizens), who will necessarily be swept up by this requirement.
The full order here. Its actually a great read.