Earlier today, a federal judge blocked key portions of Arizona’s controversial immigration enforcement law from going into effect. In her ruling, United States District Court Judge Susan Bolton stated that some portions of Arizona’s immigration law will be able to go into effect today, as scheduled. However, the judge issued a preliminary injection against the parts of the law that call for police officers to check and verify people’s immigration status when they are enforcing other. In addition, the preliminary injunction also took issue with the part of the law that would require immigrants to carry documentation of their immigration status at all times. Both of these parts of the law have been placed on hold while Judge Bolton listens to various challenges to the law.
“There is a substantial likelihood that officers will wrongfully arrest legal resident aliens,” wrote Judge Bolton. “By enforcing this statute, Arizona would impose a ‘distinct, unusual and extraordinary’ burden on legal resident aliens that only the federal government has the authority to impose.”
Arizona’s immigration enforcement law was adopted in April 2010 and has caused much controversy from both sides of the immigration debate. Opponents of the law have prevailed for now: The provisions that most angered opponents will not take effect, including sections that required officers to check a person’s immigration status while enforcing other laws.