Alabama governor signs 'tough' immigration law
Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley signed a strict immigration law Thursday.
June 9th, 2011
01:08 PM ET

Alabama governor signs 'tough' immigration law

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley signed a "tough illegal immigration law" Thursday morning, his press office said.

The bill is considered by both supporters and critics to be among the toughest in the nation, even stricter than controversial laws in Arizona and Georgia.

Under the new law, public schools will be required to determine the citizenship and immigration status of enrolling students through sworn affidavits or birth certificates.

Authorities will also be required to detain a person who they believe is in the country illegally if the person cannot produce proof of residency when stopped "for any reason."

Alabama businesses will  be required to use a database called E-Verify to look up the immigration status of new employees. The use of the database was recently endorsed after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on a separate Arizona immigration law.

It will  be illegal for Alabama residents to knowingly give a ride or transport an illegal immigrant or for a landlord to knowingly rent a property to an illegal immigrant.

Cecillia Wang, managing attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union's immigrants rights project, called the bill "outrageous and blatantly unconstitutional" in an interview with The New York Times before Bentley signed it.

Huntsville Times editorial: A law, mostly for Hispanics

FULL STORY
soundoff (797 Responses)
  1. Barbara

    This bill is NOT outrageous. Illegal immigrants have NO rights. And giving them rights... violates OUR rights.

    June 9, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Josh

      It is called human rights, you moron. It is fine, say "I am a racist". That is all you need to add to this conversation because that is precisely what you mean. Because we all know you don't have anything to say about Canadians living and working in the US without permits.

      June 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • CuriousClintonian

      Exactly how big a problem is illegal immigration in Alabama? Didn't figure they would actually have that much of a problem with it. Don't understand the give someone a ride part, does this mean if you pick up a hitchhiker you have to ask for proof of citizenship? Or, is it aimed at bus companies or illegal imigrant bus loads to better prosecute them? Otherwise I'm all for it – illegal is illegal!

      June 9, 2011 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • CuriousClintonian

      @Josh, Actually yes, illegal Canadiens, illegal Mexicans, illegal Muslim nation folks it's all the same, illegal is illegal! File for a green card, file for proper immigration status or stay out. Pay taxes, pay insurance. Require employers to pay full required wages instead of under the table lesser wages for lesser legal status employees.

      June 9, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  2. stacy

    Rosa Parks....aren't you already on the bus!!! If you had any idea how much illegals are costing state governments and this country as a whole you might just shut up. Illegals are using tax dollars that could be helping legal citizens....don't mention the cost to health care. Go to an emergency room in a "friendly" city and tell me what you see. Sorry, but people that make uninformed comments about important issues make me crazy. Way to go Alabama!!

    June 9, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. bourneblogger

    I'm a staunch left winger but I agree with what these states are doing... Immigration is a huge problem in our country and is a major burden on our resources... Their presence increases the demand for common groceries and services, which ups the prices... They are putting wear and tear on our roads, paid for by our tax dollars, but do not pay taxes themselves... They take jobs away from legit citizens... They are often involved with crimes or accidents that wouldn't happen if they weren't here (this is not to say citizens never commit crimes)... They fill up our schools so it's harder for our children to get personal time with a teacher... School budgets are slashed to keep their budget in the black... Welfare programs, paid for by our tax dollars, are distributed once again to people who don't pay into the system and in fact often send the money they make to their home countries via Western Union... This law isn't to say that you can't be from another country and live in our States... It's saying "If you're living in our States you are welcome but you will pay into the system or you're out of here!"...

    June 9, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kerry

      Well said, couldn't agree more.

      June 9, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Shawn

    Alabama might not be a state I would ever want to drive through and/or live in but I can't help but smile at this law and hope that more states follow suit. We need to make America look less appealing. If you are not a citizen than you should get denied access to hospitals, jobs, education, housing, and transportation. Ditto for your children. If the entire USA did that guess how many illegals would hang around? It's called self-preservation folks.

    June 9, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jan

    KyleGlobal – carrying your "papers" (passport) is required in China and Russia, why not the US?

    June 9, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry

      Because this is not China or Russia.

      June 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      Thats right Larry, this is socialist America according to you. While we cut education (and not money..we pay TONS for education – quality is what I am talking about) while we pay for other nations people to live here for free, have free housing, free utilities, free health care, free money and free education. Countries like China have a surplus of money and are learning math/science at an accelerated rate. Sorry I do not want America to become another crappy ass South American country. If their culture is so "fantastic" why are they not living there? Why are these people not in their OWN country trying to make it better? Because they are cowards who run instead of fight.

      June 9, 2011 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Shannon

    Im all for it except for knowingly give a ride or transport an illegal. I wonder why this would be illegal. Can someone give me some insight on this?

    June 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry

      You'll have to interview hitchhikers before you give them a ride.

      June 9, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      Because of liability. If you pick up a illegal and he/she causes a wreck...who is going to pay for the damages? Or if they are injured they will go to the ER and cost the taxpayers 100k...also this is more to stem the flow of human trafficing.

      June 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shannon

      @ Steve.... gotcha!!

      June 9, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  7. somedude

    An attempt to fill private prisons with immigrant detainees. This was probably lobbied hard by CCA. Corrections Corporation of America.

    June 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Kim

    Excellent. All states should have done this many, many years ago. I for one am sick of paying for illegals medical, law enforement and kids eduction. Get them out of my country!!!

    June 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  9. CoosaGuy

    Thank you Governor Bentley!

    June 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Scott

    About time.. Since the US Gov doesn't have the balls to handle this then it's great that the states are doing this themselves. As far as Cecillia Wang is concerned, you need to take a better look at this. They are here ILLEGALLY!! If your here ILLEGALLY you should be arrested and deported, if you come back you should be arrested and deported, if you come back you should be arrested and locked up in what ever country you came from. It's hard enough for Americans to get jobs right now without citizens from other countries here ILLEGALLY taking them ILLEGALLY...

    June 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Larry

    I like where this is going. We can stop anyone who looks like a Mexican, or has a Spanish accent, like people from Spain. We can stop people who look Canadian, which means any white person you want. Black people may be illegal aliens from Africa. chinese people could be sneaking in from China. We can stop everyone!

    The ones we should be stopping are the idiots who make up these terrible, racist rules. No wonder alabama, mississippi, and the other white supremacy states are laughed at by everyone.

    June 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Upton

      Nothing in this law says anything about stopping someone for looking Mexican... you sir are now the racist.

      It doesn't matter what color they are ... if they are here illegally, get them out.

      On a side note, if you were looking for illegal aliens from outerspace, you would look for little green men, not humans... sometimes profiling is necessary

      June 9, 2011 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry

      Explain to me how someone looks like an illegal alien. With 9 illegal Canadians and one legal Mexican oin a lineup, who would 99% of the polulation pick as the illegal?

      June 9, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  12. 4sanity

    I would love to know how a landlord will be able to determine the legal or illegal immigration status of a renter ? All US citizens, please now PROVE that you are here legally.

    What a waste of time and energy !

    June 9, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Upton

      so you are saying just do nothing instead and continue to let the illegals leach off of hard working legal citizens.

      June 9, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      LOL the same way a Dollar Car rental veryfies who you are. I mean would you hand over 50k worth of property to someone you dont know? I wouldnt. My son presently only gets HALF the education I got. During class I sat in with him and the teacher instructed history..after 15 min or so she sat down and another teacher stood up and repeated the lesson in spanish. Really? Is that why our kids are so dumb now? So in essence he gets HALF of the instruction I did..and for what? So we can educate South America? If they cant live here..then they will not be in our school district.

      June 9, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shannon

      That's not what the article said. It said if any person is stopped for any reason and cannot provide proof of resident are required to be detained. If you have different skin color and are here legally, then you should be able to provide proof of resident. If you are abiding the law, then you shouldn't worry.

      June 9, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Upton

    For all of you saying that illegals do the jobs that no one else would do because the pay is too low... get rid of the illegals and businesses will be forced to pay higher wages to LEGAL workers or the companies will go out of business. The only reason those businesses pay so little is because ILLEGALS will work at that price because they are... wait for it... ILLEGALS!

    June 9, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • pointless1

      And to make sure the Boss Man remains wealthy all the while long on the sweat of slave labor... lmao you d0uchebag..

      June 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • RHG

      Your argument would be valid if it wasn't for.......... Minimum wage! Yes. There will always be jobs like that. Restaurant kitchens, construction, etc still pay minimum wage, is just that it's not the type of job citizens apparently desire. It's a lot easier to collect unemployment than to work in a farm. It's a lot easier to stand on a street and ask for money than to do hard labor.

      June 9, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  14. bob

    I have no problems with this law. But how does someone look illegal? Someone that is not white? Isn't that being racist?

    June 9, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • RHG

      That's the problem I have with this law. You know if your name is John Smith nobody is going to be asking your for proof of citizenship, yet the wrong last name and then is on you to prove that you belong here. If all they ask me is for my Driver's license then that's fine, but anything beyond that I would have a problem with.

      June 9, 2011 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
  15. pointless1

    I really LIKE the clause about education.... We owe that much to our own people...

    June 9, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
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