A Western Newspaper Sampler: Supremes rule on Arizona immigration law ...
Published: July 10, 2012 02:55PM
Updated: June 26, 2012 12:04PM
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Surrounded by barbed wire, Jorge Mendez joins others from Promise Arizona to protest the upcoming U.S. Supreme Court decision on Arizona's immigration law SB1070 at a vigil set up in front of the Capitol Friday, June 22, 2012, in Phoenix. Opponents of the measure have set up an around-the-clock vigil until the ruling is handed down. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

- Immigration law: Supreme Court thumps Arizona - Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

As predicted, the U.S. Supreme Court rightly struck down three out of four provisions of Arizona’s immigration enforcement law because they violated the constitutional supremacy of the Congress to create immigration law. However, the high court let stand, for now, the provision that served as a model for Utah’s immigration enforcement law. Explicit in the court’s decision, however, is the worry that these laws could lead to abuses, a concern that we share.
The principles involved in these cases are simple. The Constitution gives the federal government broad power to establish a uniform system of immigration laws, and its supremacy clause gives the feds authority to preempt state laws in this field. The wisdom of this policy is obvious, because it would make little sense for each of the 50 states to be free to set up their own systems of immigration.
However, the provision of the Arizona law that the Supreme Court upheld is grounded on the idea that state and local law officers should assist federal immigration officers in enforcement. ...
... But even at that, the high court expressed concern about whether officers would delay the release of detainees simply to verify immigration status. This could be unconstitutional if it occurred. However, the court’s major concern was that the state courts have not yet had an opportunity to review this provision of the statute. The same would be true of Utah’s law.
In short, this ruling is not the final word. How the laws are implemented could make all the difference

- Congress to blame for stalled immigration reform - Peg McEntee, The Salt Lake Tribune

... Immigrants founded this nation and have enriched it for centuries. Unfortunately, we can’t trust Congress to do anything about the immigration problem in the foreseeable future. ...

- Supporters, critics debate impact of ruling on immigration law in Utah - David Montero, The Salt Lake Tribune

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