The Department of Justice (DOJ) filed an appeal today with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals of a federal district court’s decision refusing to issue an injunction against major portions of Alabama’s new immigration law.
On September 28, Judge Sharon Blackburn upheld most of Alabama’s law, including a requirement that police officers check the immigration status of individuals stopped, detained, or arrested when they have a reasonable suspicion that the individual is unlawfully present in the United States.
The inherent right of state and local police officers to make immigration arrests has been upheld by numerous other courts of appeal, including the Fourth, Fifth, Eighth, Ninth, and 10th Circuits. Even a unanimous Supreme Court recognized the authority of local police officers to inquire into the immigration status of individuals who have been lawfully detained in 2005 in Muehler v. Mena. This makes DOJ’s challenge even more unwarranted and dubious.
Judge Blackburn also upheld a requirement that schools report on the immigration status of their students, as well as another provision barring illegal aliens from contracting with the state government or state courts from enforcing contracts with illegal aliens.
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