A blog about life, politics, and other things Utah.
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Immigration Enforcement to Hold Up?
Utah's immigration enforcement law will stand a test according to Utah Attorney General's Office.
HB497 was passed by the 2011 Utah Legislature and signed into law in March 2011. The law requires police to verify the immigration status of people arrested for felonies and class A misdemeanors as well as those booked into jail on class B and class C misdemeanors.
A class action lawsuit was filed in May 2011 by the ACLU and National Immigration Law Center on behalf of several individuals and organizations, claiming the law is unconstitutional and will invite racial profiling. In November, the Department of Justice intervened in the lawsuit, claiming Utah's law is unconstitutional because it attempts to establish a state immigration policy.
Attorneys representing the state of Utah, however, argue that HB497 reflects the state's attempt to "undertake its supporting role in the fight against illegal immigration, within the parameters set by Congress in those statutes. Contrary to the United States' arguments, HB497 does not conflict with Congress' mandate but is entirely consistent with it."
The Feds have jumped in seeking a preliminary injunction of the law, contend the law would cause unlawful harassment, damage the United States' relationship with immigrant communities and harm its reputation with foreign countries.