President Barack Obama’s White House released a statement on Monday afternoon celebrating the Supreme Court ruling which struck down most of Arizona’s controversial immigration enforcement law. However, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a vocal proponent of her state’s law, also declared victory after the court left one key provision intact.
“I am pleased that the Supreme Court has struck down key provisions of Arizona’s immigration law. What this decision makes unmistakably clear is that Congress must act on comprehensive immigration reform. A patchwork of state laws is not a solution to our broken immigration system – it’s part of the problem,” reads the White House statement.
At the same time, I remain concerned about the practical impact of the remaining provision of the Arizona law that requires local law enforcement officials to check the immigration status of anyone they even suspect to be here illegally. I agree with the Court that individuals cannot be detained solely to verify their immigration status. No American should ever live under a cloud of suspicion just because of what they look like. Going forward, we must ensure that Arizona law enforcement officials do not enforce this law in a manner that undermines the civil rights of Americans, as the Court’s decision recognizes.
Arizona’s Republican Gov. Brewer also released a statement on Monday where she celebrated the Supreme Court’s decision a “victory for the rule of law.”
Today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court is a victory for the rule of law. It is also a victory for the 10th Amendment and all Americans who believe in the inherent right and responsibility of states to defend their citizens. After more than two years of legal challenges, the heart of SB 1070 can now be implemented in accordance with the U.S. Constitution.
While the Supreme Court invalidated the critical portion of S.B. 1070 which allowed Arizona to enforce federal immigration laws – a ruling which could reverberate in states with similar laws like Alabama and Georgia – the provision that allows law enforcement to check the citizenship status to remains intact.
“The case for S.B. 1070 has always been about our support for the rule of law. That means every law, including those against both illegal immigration and racial profiling,” Brewes told reporters on Monday. “Law enforcement will be held accountable should this statute be misused in a fashion that violates an individual’s civil rights.”
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney also weighed in on the Supreme Court verdict. In a statement, Romney’s campaign said that that the law sought to address an issue where “the federal government failed to meet its responsibilities.”
Romney said that the ruling “underscores the need for a President who will lead on this critical issue and work in a bipartisan fashion to pursue a national immigration strategy. President Obama has failed to provide any leadership on immigration. This represents yet another broken promise by this President.”
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