The SB 1070 Effect
Arizona’s stiff immigration law was scheduled to take effect on Thursday, July 29. As the day drew near, opponents were sweating, hoping a court would issue at least a temporary injunction to halt SB 1070 while lawsuits proceeded. On Wednesday, July 28, District Court Judge Susan Bolton blocked part of the law, which she said may be unconstitutional.
The Alibi’s news section pursued articles related to the border and immigration as our neighbor state’s controversy boiled. The law establishes the strictest state immigration policing in the country. Under it, an officer is required to look into a person's immigration status during the enforcement of any municipal, city, county or state ordinance. That’s part of what Bolton considers problematic.
Arizonans saw “closed” signs on businesses across the state, according to Reuters. The news agency also reported a spike in yard sales in Hispanic neighborhoods, indicating that people were moving out of their homes.
Hispanic immigrants, legal and illegal, were leaving. It's hard to predict how many people will exit the state when all is said and done, especially since there's not a solid head count for undocumented immigrants to start with.
Migrant shelters on the border and the Mexican Consulate were also preparing for a flood of deportees, according to the Arizona Republic.
The Department of Justice filed suit, saying immigration policy is the business of the federal government. The White House contends federal law supersedes state law and that Arizona crossed a constitutional line.
Lawyers for Gov. Jan Brewer said Monday, Jan. 26, that the lawsuit should be dismissed because the feds' case is based on hypothetical scenarios.
Fox News reported that the Arizona Latino Republican Association became the first Hispanic group in the country to speak against the federal lawsuit and stand up for SB 1070. The group will file a motion to become, essentially, a defendant alongside Brewer and the state of Arizona.
Mexico, along with Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Paraguay and Peru, joined forces as part of a lawsuit filed by U.S. civil rights organizations. There are seven lawsuits aiming to fight Arizona's law.
A convoy from Albuquerque left for Phoenix to protest the law on Wednesday, July 28. They shoved off from the Albuquerque Center for Peace and Justice. As of press time, preparations were underway nationwide as communities and organizations prepared to demonstrate on Thursday, July 29, the day SB 1070 was slated to take effect.
Infamous Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio—known for rounding up immigrants from Hispanic neighborhoods well before SB 1070 hit the spotlight—was preparing, too. "Intelligence gathering leads us to believe that several acts of civil disobedience are planned," he told KTAR, an Arizona talk-radio station.