Supreme Court Strikes Down Most of Controversial Arizona Immigration Law

| by Michael Allen

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down most of Arizona’s controversial SB 1070 immigration law, but upheld that police could inquire about immigration status when they stop suspects.

The parts of the Arizona law that were ruled unconstitutional were making it a crime to not carry immigration documents and looking for a job without a work permit.

In a 5-3 ruling, the court said that federal laws preempted most of the Arizona law. Justice Elena Kagan recused herself from the ruling.

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) said in a statement: “Today’s decision by the Supreme Court is a victory for the rule of law. It’s also a victory for the 10th Amendment and all Americans who believe it is a responsibility of states to defend their citizens. After more than two years of legal challenges, the heart of SB 1070 can be implemented in accordance with the U.S. Constitution.”

However, Georgetown Law professor David Cole told CNN that the decision was “almost a total victory for the Obama administration.”

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) praised the Supreme Court for striking down most of the Arizona law: “With three out of the four provisions being struck down, the ruling shows that the Obama administration was right to challenge this law, which was not just ill-advised but also unconstitutional."