Judge questions need to ban enforcement of Arizona immigration law’s ‘papers please’ provision
John Bouma, representing the state, said all the talk about whether Hispanics are disproportionately impacted by the law misses a key point: The law is aimed at those who cross the border illegally.
By Howard Fischer
Capitol Media Services/East Valley Tribune
A federal judge on Tuesday questioned a bid by a civil rights lawyer who wants a new order blocking the state from enforcing the most controversial provision of its 2010 law aimed at illegal immigrants.
Karen Tumlin of the National Immigration Law Center told Judge Susan Bolton that the “papers please’’ provision of SB 1070 is inherently illegal. It requires police to question who they have stopped about their immigration status if there is reason to believe they are in the country illegally.
And Tumlin said lawmakers had racial motivations in approving the law, and it will have a disparate impact on Hispanics.
But Bolton pointed out that the U.S. Supreme Court just two months ago ruled that she was incorrect in her initial order enjoining the provision even before it was ever allowed to take effect.
In fact, the judge said, what Tumlin and other groups want is the same kind of pre-enactment injunction the high court rejected. The section still remains on hold, as Bolton has yet to dissolve her original injunction in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling.
That high court ruling came in a lawsuit brought by the Obama administration which argued that the provision was in conflict with federal law. The justices unanimously rejected that contention, though they voided some other sections of the statute.
At some point, Bolton will be forced to carry out the Supreme Court’s mandate and say that section of SB 1070 cannot be blocked based on arguments of federal preemption. Tumlin on Tuesday sought to convince Bolton that this case is different.
Editorial: Setback for Rogue Immigration Laws/The New York Times