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. Vixil

    In a Democracy it takes more than conjecture to effect change.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |

    GOD BLESS THE JUDGE......!!!

    July 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Walter

    Any chance Democrats had of winning in November is gone. This is just going to engage the non-left even more (and by non-left I don't mean just the tea party, but even independents who by a large majority were for the Arizona law.)

    July 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • John C

      The large majority in favor of the law believed the string of lies the republicans put out to on this. This entire law was nothing but a cheap right wing stunt for attention. This has done more to hurt the cause against ilegal immigration than help it. It was only done for the benefit of the GOP, nothing else. The entire party is based on lies. From death panels to this racist law to the rediuclous polls they take. Teh entire survival of the GOP depends on convinicing people of things that they know are flat out lies. Whatever your poltical beliefs, why support such a blatant, dishonest and disengenuous gand of clowns?

      July 28, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
  4. citizenUSA

    This really makes the once considered plan to have "national" ID cards all the more sensible. If you don't have one then you're in trouble. If the FEDS implement it they can't b-atch about it. I don't understand how anyone thinks it proper to make it illegal to verify someone's citizenship when not having any is illegal itself. Do I want a bunch of illegal aliens in my country no matter where they come from? HELL NO! What other illegal things would that person be willing to do? I don't understand how my government can say, "sure, come on in and live here illegally but re-broadcast part of an NFL game and you'll be prosecuted". (I know that's not a federal thing but I could not think of something as ridiculous that is federal at the moment. Someone please offer suggestions).

    July 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Enigmatic1

    I guess imigration issues will never get fixed now that it's back in the hands for the FEDs. I regret now voting for Obama. I guess I shouldn't expect anything less from the American Judicial system. I applaud Arizona for making a bold attempt to protect it's citized and I hope it won't be thier last. Maybe someday we can find a way to deal with La Raza and other Latino racist groups. It ain't over yet!!!!

    July 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  6. aznative

    america has become so scared of hurting someones feelings that it is to weak to defend its very own borders from illegal acts. time for congress to quit squabbling over small collateral damage and just get something done

    July 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. TxLatino

    I can not understand why most of you are filled with such hatred. Yes, these individuals are here illegally but are only trying to provide for their families just as you would for yours. This law is no diffrent then when Hitler put the Star of David on all Jews before WWII. We all read the outcome of that. This law only gives the police power to search anyone, anytime just buy asking if your here illegally. Once they stop you, they now have the reason to search you as well. So dont act like this law will not affect you in anyway. Hispanics come in all colors including white, so just be careful for what you wish for. Because the next time your walking down the street in AZ, without your ID, is the day they may deport you as well.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brent

      I understand what you are saying, but there ARE processes to come to this country legally, certain people just can't be bothered to do things the right way, so there is an automatic loss of respect for those people and, unfortunately, for the people who did do it right by way of association.

      July 28, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Charles Gotcher

      Who cares if the police stop you and search you if your doing nothing wrong?? I will be glad to allow it if it helps catch more criminals. I have a sticker on my car that allows the police to stop it for no reason at all if it is on the road past a certain hour at night. It protects my vehicle if it is stolen in the middle of the night. What's the difference?

      July 28, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  8. leshell

    i went to the store to buy beer and cigarettes, i was asked for ID, isnt that age profiling? think i can sue?

    July 28, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Maggie

    Great, let's all go out and break the law and then call it legal. How can you profile Hispanics in a state where the majority of the state are legal Hispanics or American Indian. Hell, I bet half of the police officers are Hispanic. Keep in mind this is not an immigration law it is an ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT LAW. So let the illegal activities commence America. Apparently people who break the law coming into our country illegally, get tax-payers money while committing fraud with fake purchased id's is not illegal. So bring it on, let's all get apply for government assistance with fake ID's, I don't see how they can charge you with anything. If they don't charge illegals, surely they won't charge a legal American citizen.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Ben

    I wonder if any of the short sighted people calling this a victory ever heard of a person named Pyrrhus? Probably not, and even if they did, it will either be lost on them. And, if they don't, they will claim likely claim they did they next time they are at the local Starbucks loudly proclaiming how this court decision was a victory for civil rights and stopping Bush.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Chris

    How long are you guys going to let this happen to you?.This situation would never happen in my country. How come you can't defend and enforce your OWN laws ?

    How come you feel so intimidated to enforce your laws? I have traveled to several countries around the world and if you break any law in there you suffer the consequences. If you don't defend your own laws you are doing a disservice to ALL the people that fought AND DIED to keep you free and strong.

    History never feels like history when you are living in it. But I think we witnessing the decline of the American Empire, much like the UK passed the torch in the last century.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Vikki

    This is just too funny. There are several other states that hav, basically, the same law as Arizona's. Why weren't they pulled into this fiasco?

    July 28, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Matt

    So much for States making their own laws.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Tom

    Well here is a Democrat that won't be voting for Obama again. It really looks like he is trying his best to not get a second term. Half of all Democrats were in favor of the law as well as majorities of the other two main parties. With a solid majority of voters for this law I think Obama is in even more hot water then ever before. Secure the border Mr President.

    July 28, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  15. KidRocks

    Good for that Arizona judge for blocking the very key part of that racist law! The Tea-Party must be stopped in their racist tracks and this ruling today hammers the tea-baggers good! The Tea-Party is chockful of racists, rednecks, obstructionists, anarchists and assassins!

    July 28, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
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