As reports on the Supreme Court’s hearing on immigration trickled out of the courtroom, proponents and opponents of Arizona’s immigration bill, known as SB 1070, reacted quickly.
It appears that the justices weren’t sympathetic to the federal government’s argument that state police officers would violate federal immigration jurisdiction if they checked the status of someone they pull over.
The questions lead to speculation at the law, at least in some part, may be allowed to stand.
Organizations on both side of the debate were quick to weigh in after the hearing. The American Civil Liberties Union issued a statement stressing the need to stop SB 1070 and similar laws, because they “encourage racial profiling, harm public safety and lead to civil rights abuses.”
“The justices heard compelling argument for why they should strike down a law that lays waste to some of our most cherished American values-- freedom from unnecessary police intrusion and equality for all people, regardless of how they look or sound,” said Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the ACLU.
Angelica Salas of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights based in Los Angeles called Arizona’s law “myopic, opaque, and divisive. CHIRLA expects the law to be struck down."
SB 1070 supporters had other expectations.
The Federation for American Immigration Reform, a Washington-based nonprofit that opposes illegal immigrant and advocates a reduction in legal immigration to the country, said that Arizona “established compelling legal arguments in support of the state and local governments’ authority to enforce federal immigration laws.”
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who helped write SB 1070, was pleased with the Court’s line of questioning. “This was a very good day for Arizona in the Supreme Court today,” he told Fox News. “The U.S. Justice Department was on the ropes.”
Click here to read the transcript of hearings.
Get the latest news and analysis delivered to your inbox. Sign up for National Journal's morning alert, Wake-Up Call,
and afternoon newsletter, The Edge. Subscribe here.