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Supreme Court Upholds E-Verify

Supreme Court

Supreme Court

The Supreme Court decided 5-to-3 that states can punish employers who violate a mandatory E-Verify law. The court challenge was led by the U.S. Chamber of Congress against Arizona's 2007 law that suspends a business's license if they don't use E-Verify to check the eligibility of all new hires.

During the creation of the Basic Pilot Program, which is now known as E-Verify, Congress gave authority to the states to use its business licensing practices as penalty for companies that hire illegal workers. The Court used that clause in its majority opinion.

Arizona’s procedures simply implement the sanctions that Congress expressly allowed the States to pursue through licensing laws. Given that Congress specifically preserved such authority for the States, it stands to reason that Congress did not intend to prevent the States from using appropriate tools to exercise that authority. . . .

Because we conclude that the State’s licensing provisions fall squarely within the federal statute’s savings clause and that the Arizona regulation does not otherwise conflict with federal law, we hold that the Arizona law is not preempted.

-- Chief Justice Roberts wrote in the majority opinion.

Arizona became the first state in the country to pass a mandatory E-Verify bill that requires all employers to use the employment verification system. Since then, Mississippi and South Carolina have followed suit, while many more states have passed laws requiring some businesses to use E-Verify.

The ruling is a big loss for the nation's major business groups and the Obama Administration who all opposed these types of laws.

Justices Scalia, Kennedy, Alito, and Thomas joined parts of the Chief Justice's opinion. Justice Breyer filed a dissenting opinion joined by Justice Ginsburg. Justice Sotomayor filed a separate dissenting opinion. Justice Kagan removed herself from the case since she filed a brief in support of the U.S. Chamber's argument while working in the Obama Administration's Justice Department.

NumbersUSA filed an amicus brief in support of the Arizona law. Roy outlined our key points in the following blogs:

 

In the News

Strict Arizona immigration law gets Supreme Court blessing

Quoted - Saturday, May 28, 2011

Roy Beck of the reform group NumbersUSA sees it as much more than that, calling the ruling "a tremendous victory for unemployed Americans."

"There are about 7 million illegal aliens estimated to be working in non-agricultural jobs. There are many Americans unemployed and lined up to get those jobs," Beck claimed.

Also supporting the ruling is the Latino advocacy group known as the League of United Latin American citizens (LULAC).

Luis Vera, LULAC's general counsel, says the law should expose businesses that utilize underpaid immigrants in unsafe conditions.

About a dozen states have laws similar to Arizona's.

"There are at least a dozen other states that have held back," Rob Beck said, "I think we're going to see those states passing those laws in the next year."

by Barry Bagnato -- CBS News

Roy Beck of the reform group NumbersUSA sees it as much more than that, calling the ruling "a tremendous victory for unemployed Americans."



"There are about 7 million illegal aliens estimated to be working in non-agricultural jobs. There are many Americans unemployed and lined up to get those jobs," Beck claimed.



Also supporting the ruling is the Latino advocacy group known as the League of United Latin American citizens (LULAC).



Luis Vera, LULAC's general counsel, says the law should expose businesses that utilize underpaid immigrants in unsafe conditions.



About a dozen states have laws similar to Arizona's.



"There are at least a dozen other states that have held back," Rob Beck said, "I think we're going to see those states passing those laws in the next year."



Further, he predicts the business community's concerned for a single uniform system will send it from the Supreme Court across the street to Congress, to push for a standard nationwide eVerify requirement.

by Barry Bagnato -- CBS News

Show More http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20066585-503544.html

Immigration bill ignites grass-roots fire

Quoted - Sunday, June 24, 2007

"Conservative anger at the Senate immigration bill is at such a pitch that even Republican lawmakers are feeling the heat. Groups like NumbersUSA have been channeling that grass-roots fury and, in doing so, have leaped in size and are playing a larger role in the immigration debate than ever before..."

The Los Angeles Times

Supreme Court: State can offer illegal immigrants reduced tuition

In the News - Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Supreme Court has upheld a California law giving illegal immigrants living there reduced in-state tuition rates at public universities, the same rates legal state residents enjoy.

The justices without comment Monday refused to accept an appeal from out-of-state students attending California schools, who said it was unfair that as U.S. citizens, they had to pay as much as $20,000 more than illegal immigrants. They claimed such "preferential treatment" violated federal law.

The court decision is a victory for immigrant rights groups. California is one of a dozen states that make undocumented aliens conditionally eligible for in-state tuition, according to the legal brief filed by the suing students. Those various laws will remain intact for now.

CNN.com

http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/06/06/us.scotus.immigrant.tuition/index.html?eref=rss_latest&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+rss%2Fcnn_latest+%28RSS%3A+Most+Recent%29

Homeland Security Is Ordered to Respond to Petition on Immigration Jails

In the News - Saturday, June 27, 2009

Substandard and abusive conditions in immigration detention “are of the utmost importance,” a federal judge in Manhattan said Thursday, ruling that the Department of Homeland Security’s 2 ½-year delay in responding to a petition for legally enforceable regulations was “unreasonable as a matter of law.”

The judge, Denny Chin of Federal District Court in Manhattan, ordered the Obama administration to grant or deny the petition asking for detention rules within 30 days. He denied the government’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit, filed last year by two former immigration detainees and two advocacy agencies, seeking to force a response.

By Nina Bernstein -- New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/27/nyregion/27immig.html?_r=1&ref=nyregion

Feds spike voter citizenship checks in Georgia

In the News - Monday, June 1, 2009

The Justice Department has rejected Georgia's system of using Social Security numbers and driver's license data to check whether prospective voters are citizens, a process that was a subject of a federal lawsuit in the weeks leading up to November's election.

In a letter released on Monday, the Justice Department said the state's voter verification program is frequently inaccurate and has a "discriminatory effect" on minority voters. The decision means Georgia must halt the citizenship checks, although the state can still ask the Justice Department to reconsider, according to the letter and to the Georgia secretary of state's office.

By Shannon McCaffrey -- The Associated Press

http://www3.signonsandiego.com/stories/2009/jun/01/us-voting-checks-060109/

Court Upholds Cuts in Aid to Noncitizens Who Are Old, Blind or Disabled

In the News - Friday, May 15, 2009

Thousands of impoverished elderly, disabled or blind legal residents of New York State, including refugees, will be limited to $352 a month in public aid — about half of what lower courts have said they should get — under a decision by the Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court.

The 5-to-2 decision, rendered on Tuesday, overturned the rulings of two lower courts, which had held that under the state and federal Constitutions, such legal residents could not be denied a higher level of benefits simply because they were not citizens. On narrower grounds, the high court held that the state had no duty to fill in for a federal program that had stopped benefits to most disabled legal immigrants in 1996.

By Nina Bernstein -- New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/15/nyregion/15benefits.html

Criminal aliens getting more ICE attention

In the News - Tuesday, May 12, 2009

"Calls for U.S. immigration officials to concentrate on deporting more illegal aliens who have serious criminal records are showing results, police say.

A new program at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency -- called Secure Communities -- is netting aliens for deportation when they are arrested for crimes by police in 48 communities, USA Today reported Tuesday.

The program was established in response to criticism of ICE during the Bush administration. Observers said the agency concentrated too much on mass deportations of immigrant workers picked up during raids on work places instead of targeting violent illegal aliens who commit crimes, the newspaper said...."

UPI, 12 May 2009

http://www.upi.com/Top_News/2009/05/12/Criminal-aliens-getting-more-ICE-attention/UPI-58211242144472/

Court Bars Identity-Theft Law as Tool in Immigration Cases

In the News - Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a favorite tool of prosecutors in immigration cases, ruling unanimously that a federal identity-theft law may not be used against many illegal workers who used false Social Security numbers to get jobs.

The question in the case was whether workers who use fake identification numbers to commit some other crimes must know they belong to a real person to be subject to a two-year sentence extension for “aggravated identity theft.”

By Adam Liptak and Julia Preston -- New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/05/us/05immig.html?_r=1

William and Mary student to serve 12 months over immigration offenses

In the News - Wednesday, April 29, 2009

"A former FBI agent and William and Mary student has been sentenced to 12 months in prison after admitting she entered a sham marriage to gain U.S. citizenship more than seven years ago.

Yue Cheng, 26, of Williamsburg was sentenced to a year in prison by Judge Henry Coke Morgan, said Dana J. Boente, acting U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Cheng pleaded guilty on Dec. 4 to five federal offenses, including marriage fraud and unlawfully claiming U.S. citizenship."

David Macaulay, Daily Press (Va.), 29 April 2009

http://www.dailypress.com/news/dp-local_fbiagent_0429apr29,0,7594147.story

Md. schools forbid illegals head count

In the News - Wednesday, March 25, 2009

"The Maryland State Board of Education on Tuesday said Frederick County officials are prohibited by federal law from seeking a count of how many illegal immigrants are in the county school system....

"What the Supreme Court says is that you cannot deny the public education. The same Supreme Court decision doesn't talk about [the Board of Education's] ability to provide information," Mr. Jenkins said.

Mr. Jenkins said that if the number of illegal immigrants in the school system were known, taxpayers would know more about where their money is going. He also said that if the head count were taken, the county could ask the federal government to help fund the education of those without legal status"

Mark Chenoweth, Washington Times, March 25, 2009

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/mar/25/maryland-wont-allow-counting-of-illegals/

Massachusetts Wage Laws Protecting Illegal Workers

In the News - Monday, December 29, 2008

Massachusetts courts and lawmakers are forcing companies to pay fair wages to illegal aliens.

"Lawyers and advocates say that beyond the unfairness to victims, abuses against immigrants are a threat to American workers, because the practices - common in cleaning, construction, and other industries - could spread to the general workforce during the economic downturn."

By Maria Sacchetti, Boston Globe

http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2008/12/29/state_wage_laws_also_protecting_illegal_workers/

Immigration lawyers' misconduct targeted in federal proposal

In the News - Saturday, August 23, 2008

"The Bush administration has quietly proposed to overhaul the disciplinary process for lawyers practicing in the nation's immigration courts, aiming to weed out abusive and incompetent ones.

The proposed changes would set new minimum standards of conduct for the attorneys and give judges greater power to punish them...."

Richard B. Schmitt, LA Times, 23 August 2008

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-immig23-2008aug23,0,1727048.story