U.S Supreme Court supports Arizona immigration law
After hearing arguments concerning Arizona’s strict immigration law on Wednesday, the Supreme Court justices suggested they are ready to uphold parts of the controversial law allowing police officers to check the immigration status of individuals they believe are in the country illegally.
According to The Los Angeles Times, the Obama administration argued that they wanted the entire law off the table, yet clashed with justices who said they believed there was no problem in allowing police officers to check the status of those who are stopped.
The court is unsure what will happen with other aspects of the immigration law. However, the justices have made it clear that they are disturbed by part of the law requiring it to be a state crime for immigrants not to carry registration papers or illegal immigrants to seek work. The Times further reported the stop-and-arrest provision to be the most disputed part of Arizona’s immigration law.
The most recent argument between the administration and the states rights revolves around the power of the federal government in having exclusive control of immigration policy, The Associated Press reported.
Justice Stephan Breyer commented on the issue and said he did not see why it would violate federal immigration law if police had the authority to notify federal agents about having a possible illegal immigrant in their custody.
Solicitor General Donald Verrilli Jr. tried to persuade the justices that the law should be viewed in its entirety, rather than in sections. However, Justice Sonia Sotomayor told Verilli that a strongly opposing argument would be needed to strike the law down.
Verrilli’s argument “is not selling very well,” she said.
Chief Justice John Roberts stated that ”It seems to me that the federal government just doesn’t want to know who’s here illegally and who’s not.”
A decision in the case is expected to come out in late June.