July 28th, 2010
01:19 PM ET

Judge blocks part of controversial Arizona immigration law

A federal judge has blocked one of the most controversial sections of a tough Arizona immigration law, granting a preliminary injunction Wednesday that prevents police from questioning people about their immigration status.

That provision required police to "make a reasonable attempt to determine the immigration status of a person stopped, detained or arrested" if the officer has a reasonable suspicion that the person is in the United States illegally.

U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton's ruling, in response to a motion filed by the federal government, came with scant hours to go before the law goes into effect.

Read the full ruling (PDF) | What does ruling mean?

She also blocked provisions of the law making it a crime to fail to apply for or carry alien registration papers or "for an unauthorized alien to solicit, apply for, or perform work," and a provision "authorizing the warrantless arrest of a person" if there is reason to believe that person might be subject to deportation.

"We believe the court ruled correctly when it prevented key provisions of SB1070 from taking effect. While we understand the frustration of Arizonans with the broken immigration system, a patchwork of state and local policies would seriously disrupt federal immigration enforcement and would ultimately be counterproductive," the Department of Justice said in a statement. "States can and do play a role in cooperating with the federal government in its enforcement of the immigration laws, but they must do so within our constitutional framework.

"This administration takes its responsibility to secure our borders seriously and has dedicated unprecedented resources to that effort. We will continue to work toward smarter and more effective enforcement of our laws while pressing for a comprehensive approach that provides true security and strengthens accountability and responsibility in our immigration system at the national level."

Seven lawsuits are seeking to block implementation of the law, signed by Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer in April. It is to go into effect Thursday.

Watch: Gov. Brewer reacts to preliminary injunction

The law also targets those who hire illegal immigrant laborers or knowingly transport them.

Opponents say the law will lead to racial profiling, which is illegal.

Supporters point out that the law prohibits racial profiling and people cannot be stopped and asked for proof of legal residence based solely on their looks.

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Filed under: Arizona • Immigration
soundoff (827 Responses)
  1. Obamamnesty

    Well, Obama you won this one! Now seal the GD border! There is NO amnesty Obama! You won this battle but will lose the war! Illegals are not welcome here! Majority rules!

    July 28, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |

    Well, better luck next time. NEXT

    July 28, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Brian

    The Arizona Law honestly makes is a smoke screen for an inept run state government. Why? Not for the reasons any of you think. It is already a Federal Law that is not being enforced. Was not enforced by neither of the Parties. You would think since Terrorists are so important threat to this country's security but not even the Bush Administration and Homeland Security enforced these laws. Why not to alienate the Illegal Voters once again, who were largely responsable for both Terms Bush had. Then they turned on his party voted for Obama.
    Neither Party wants to enforce the laws that are already in place. Arizona's law does nothing but be redundent and that is what will be happening with this.

    Another part is money. The departments that should be enforcing these laws like Immigration, Law Enforcement, etc budgets have been slashed for decades both on the Federal and Local Level. Look at Arizona and their massive cuts of Law Enforcement in the past 20 years on the local level. The State has one of the smallest budgets for Law Enforcement in the Country at the local and state levels that is their city police and state patrol levels these are the ones checking for the IDs and legit immigration. The first contact people do not have the budgets to do their jobs so they skip doing that. Sorry reality of the situation.
    When this law was passed they State cut the police once again with major layoffs. The cops do not have manpower to enforce this law on their end. Then the governor passing this Federal Redundant Law asked the Federal Government to bail them out when they cannot enforce it.
    The Law is a smoke screen for the inept way that State's government runs things. I know I lived there until last year. I have friends on the police force down there. The police want to enforce the laws on the books but cannot because of the lack of manpower and budget they have there.
    It is not just one party it is both of them they do the same things for different reasons.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Tiddah1

    Some people on this post are being fooled by this debate. This has nothing to do with democrat vs. republican. It has to with Federal vs. state law. Feral law trumps state law plain and simple. We cannot have 50 different laws for 50 differents re: immigration. Those of you so upset need to push your congress men/women to allocate more money to border states to secure the border and to work on comprehensive immigration reform.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  5. John From SC

    I am sure that this teaches the lesson well. Your large Federal goverment does not care about the little state of Arizona because they care more about getting the latino votes. Everyone should vote to make this a safe and better place to live. Obama wants 'immigration reform' where we want illegals out. He wants their vote and he can't get it unless they become legal. Speak English and get an education and ditch that Mexicna flag on your car are all good starters! Otherwise get the hell out.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Dean

    Just ONE more reason for a revolt on Nov 2. Stem the Red Tide now or forever lose America.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  7. FDA

    In a national interview Gov. Jan Brewer stated unequivocally that a driver's license is not a form of valid identification to prove legal status. Not many of you, since many of you are harping on if you were asked by a police officer for a driver's license that you would have to show it to them, you are under the misapprehension that it proves legal status, which according to the Gov. it doesn't, therefore it wouldn't for the police officers. For those who also haven't seen the news, it can be more than a few hours being detained, it can be over 24 hours, sometimes days, especially if you come up against a prejudiced official and you are from out of state and so is your birth certificate. Something has to be done, but if even a valid drivers license isn't proof then will everyone be required to carry their birth certificate (which in most states you have to have in order to get the valid driver's license). The systems is broken at a National level it needs to be fixed at a National level, hound your Rep's and Senators, the more people who do this the faster it may get done (heavy sarcasm at this point).

    July 28, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • FDA

      Part of the post was missing – at the beginning I asked how many of you had seen the National interview with Gov. Jan Brewer when she stated unequivocally that a driver's license was not valid proof of legal status.

      July 28, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
  8. austinj

    Good to see this law was blocked. This law was nothing more than state sanctioned racism. I know because I am Hispanic and have family in Arizona who is constantly stopped and harassed by local authorities. It got so bad that one of my family members actually got deported even though he is US citizen, born and bread here. His "crime" was that he had dark skin so a white deputy assumed that he was illegal. That and he has a heavy accent.

    I'm not against having a secure border but targeting people based on the color of their skin or sound of their voice is wrong. If you want to stop illegal immigration, that's easy, go after the white Republican small business owners who hire them. Once you get rid of the illegal hiring practices, you'll get rid of your illegal immigration problem.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Quietwalker

    The Court's ruling is available as a pdf file here on the CNN page. It demonstrates that we do really have at least one intelligent woman in Arizona! It should be required reading before comments are accepted.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
  10. sirock

    Illegal’s vote in elections if they register with a fake SS # many states have voter registration tied in with the Drivers license Dept. In refuge cities they get register. After they are given Amnesty by this current Gov during the Lame duck session. They will vote pay attention folks Change you can believe in will consume the American dream.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • austinj

      This argument makes no sense. Illegal immigrants can not vote. Just because Fox news and Rush Limbaugh say otherwise does not make it correct.

      July 28, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Enough Already


    July 28, 2010 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
  12. AyAyAy AZ

    If you boycott Arizona you are boycotting the people you are supposedly trying to help. The majority of Arizona's population is mostly Mexican/ Hispanic and or Latino orgin. I actually live in AZ and know what's going on. All you people are only hurting the people you are trying to help by not visiting AZ. I know many families that this directly effects because tourism has declined. This law isn't even in effect yet. Know your facts.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
  13. James

    It looks like it is OK to punish the businesses that have dealings with illegal immigrants, but not the illegal immigrants themselves. Additionally, it looks like citizens can still sue their local police for not enforcing the Federal Immigration Laws. Confusing.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Enough Already


    July 28, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ChicagoBorn

    I was born, raised and lived in the most corrupt city in this country (the rest aren't far behind thanks to politicians of every ilk), Chicago, IL the Valhalla of Democratic coruption. Most of us, Republican or Democrat, want the same result - peace. Just because you are in the military, does not mean that you are a raving maniac bent on killing. Study your world history boys and girls.

    RE: Illegal immigration. Just come in through the front door. This country has enough internal problems (which it ignores) to be worrying about solving the problems of other countries. Who is helping the people in Appalachia, the Native American population, etc, etc.

    Either you are an American who believes in the greatness of this country and wants to see it sustained and grow or you are an idiot bent on its destruction through blind idealism. Open your eyes.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
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