State Efforts to Deter Unauthorized Aliens: Legal Analysis of Arizona's S.B. 1070 [May 3, 2010]   [open pdf - 296KB]

"On April 23, 2010, Arizona enacted S.B. 1070, which is designed to discourage and deter the entry or presence of aliens who lack lawful status under federal immigration law. Potentially sweeping in effect, the measure requires state and local law enforcement officials to facilitate the detection of unauthorized aliens in their daily enforcement activities. The measure also establishes criminal penalties under state law, in addition to those already imposed under federal law, for alien smuggling offenses and failure to carry or complete alien registration documents. Further, it makes it a crime under Arizona law for an unauthorized alien to apply for or perform work in the state, either as an employee or an independent contractor. The enactment of S.B. 1070 has sparked significant legal and policy debate. Supporters argue that federal enforcement of immigration law has not adequately deterred the migration of unauthorized aliens into Arizona, and that state action is both necessary and appropriate to combat the negative effects of unauthorized immigration. Opponents argue, among other things, that S.B. 1070 will be expensive and disruptive, will be susceptible to uneven application, and can undermine community policing by discouraging cooperation with state and local law enforcement. In part to respond to these concerns, the Arizona State Legislature modified S.B. 1070 on April 30, 2010, through the approval of H.B. 2162. Whenever states enact laws or adopt policies to affect the entry or stay of noncitizens, including aliens present in the United States without legal authorization, questions can arise whether Congress has preempted their implementation."

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CRS Report for Congress, R41221
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