Entries in Immigation Law (4)


Gingrich Slams Obama for South Carolina Immigration Lawsuit

NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images(CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich touched on a local issue when speaking at a packed town hall meeting in Charleston, S.C., Monday night.  The GOP hopeful had harsh words for President Obama for allowing the U.S. Department of Justice to sue the state of South Carolina over its immigration law.

“Clearly the Obama administration has been comfortable allowing foreign governments to enter a lawsuit against an American state.  So here’s a simple way to think of it: President Obama sided with Mexico, I would side with South Carolina,” Gingrich said.

South Carolina’s law imposes proof of U.S. citizenship for a person caught committing a crime or pulled over in a car by law enforcement.  The DOJ says the state’s law will distract law enforcement from other duties as well as result in the harassment and detention of “foreign visitors and legal immigrants, as well as U.S. citizens, who cannot readily prove their lawful status.”  The DOJ is allowing foreign countries to join in on the lawsuit against the state.

Gingrich said Monday night that Obama should not allow the lawsuit to proceed, nor should he allow other countries to join.

“No American president has the right to side with foreigners against the people and laws of the states of the U.S.,” Gingrich said.  “We can have internal family fights and that’s fine, but we should have a very clear rule that the people of the U.S. do not want a president who’s confused about whose right they’re defending.”

Gingrich’s comments were well received by the crowd, which erupted with applause and cheers over his stance.  Gingrich also took the time to revisit his stance on immigration and once again restated his position on securing the border, but allowing established families to remain in the U.S. legally.  Those allowed to stay would be selected in the same style as a WWII selective service board, which would take individual cases within the community.  Gingrich has not presented how or if exactly this could be accomplished.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Obama to Speak on Immigration Reform at US-Mexico Border

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama will tout his administration's improvements in border security and renew a commitment to overhauling the nation's immigration system in a speech Tuesday on the U.S.-Mexico border at El Paso, Texas.

But with key voices on both sides of the debate saying there is little chance Congress will overhaul immigration laws any time soon, Obama's speech is widely seen as a political appeal to Hispanics, who are a key constituency for his 2012 re-election campaign.

Hispanics voted for Obama by a 2-1 margin in 2008.  But many have since become disillusioned, hit hard by the sluggish economic recovery and disappointed by unfulfilled promises to improve policies affecting millions of legal and illegal immigrants and their families, community leaders say.

The White House insists that Obama has always been committed to achieving a comprehensive package of immigration system reforms, and has blamed the shifting political winds in Washington for the delay.

Most Republicans and some moderate Democrats staunchly oppose any legislation that would address the legal status of the country's estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants, citing concerns about competition for scarce U.S. jobs and added strain on social welfare programs.

Still, Obama has held three high-profile meetings on immigration in recent weeks, pulling together a diverse mix of stakeholders and lawmakers from across the country to enlist help campaigning for his plan, and adding pressure on Republicans who oppose it.

Obama envisions a sweeping law that would make immigration enforcement programs more strategic, penalize employers who hire illegal workers, streamline the visa process and provide relief to thousands of immigrant families living in the shadows.´╗┐

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Arizona Appeals to Supreme Court Over Immigration Law

Ethan Miller/Getty Images(PHOENIX) -- Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer is so determined to have her state's controversial immigration enforcement law enacted that she's skipping the full 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and taking the matter directly to the Supreme Court.

It's widely assumed that was the Republican's intention all along, after a federal judge last July imposed an injunction on the most contentious provisions of the law, which includes allowing police officers to question a person's immigration status during the course of an arrest.

A three-member panel of the 9th Circuit Court upheld the lower court ruling, leaving parts of the law, known as SB 1070, in limbo.  Brewer decided she stood a better shot with the Supreme Court rather than the full appeals court, given the high court has five conservative justices who may be sympathetic to her cause.

The Justice Department will argue against the law, claiming that only the federal government can arrest and deport illegal immigrants.

Some parts of SB 1070 were allowed to go into effect, such as a provision dealing with sanctions for employers who hire illegal immigrants.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


9th Circuit Court Blocks Enforcement of Arizona's Immigration Law

Ethan Miller/Getty Images(PHOENIX) --  On Monday, a federal appeals court blocked the enforcement of key provisions of an Arizona immigration law considered one of the toughest in the nation.

A central provision of the law requires police officers to check for immigration papers if they have a reasonable suspicion that a subject is undocumented.

Judge Richard Paez, writing for a split panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals said, “By imposing mandatory obligations on state and local officers, Arizona interferes with the federal government’s authority to implement its priorities and strategies in law enforcement, turning Arizona officers into state-directed DHS agents.”

Monday’s ruling upholds the decision made by a lower court last July.

Linton Joaquin, General Counsel of the National Immigration Law Center called the opinion a “resounding victory and clear affirmation of the unconstitutionality of the law.”

“It sends a clear message,” he said, “to other states contemplating similar laws. Immigration enforcement is fundamentally a federal concern, and that states are prohibited from enacting immigration legislation on their own.”

Even before Monday’s decision, Gov. Jan Brewer, who signed the law in April of 2010, vowed to take the case to the Supreme Court, if necessary.

A Justice Department spokesman said he was “pleased” with the ruling.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio´╗┐

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