Having sued to stop new immigration laws in Indiana and Georgia, the ACLU is now threatening to sue to stop Alabama’s immigration bill (HB 56), which was passed last week and is expected to be signed by the governor. I especially liked this sentence in the Montgomery Advertiser story:
Jared Shepherd, a law fellow with ACLU Alabama, said the organization was considering its options, but added, “I can’t imagine a scenario where we with our partner organizations don’t file a lawsuit,” he said.
I can’t imagine it either.
The Alabama law has some interesting elements: In addition to an E-Verify mandate and some police-power provisions lifted from Arizona’s SB 1070, it also makes most contracts entered into by illegal aliens unenforceable and bars illegals from admission to state colleges.
This last element would render moot the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision Monday not to review a California case that permitted illegal immigrants to receive in-state tuition discounts at California state colleges. At issue is a provision from the 1996 federal immigration law that prohibits states from giving “any postsecondary benefit” to an “alien who is not lawfully present in the United States … on the basis of residence within a state.” What California did was cleverly change its law to give in-state tuition to any graduate of a California high school, regardless of the state they now live in. Kris Kobach, who represented the American students from outside California who filed the lawsuit, said the open-borders side was playing “semantic games to defeat the objectives of Congress” — that’s true enough, but what is positive law but a semantic game? The answer is to require all institutions of higher education, public and private, to verify the legal status of enrolling students as a condition of receiving any form of federal aid, including student loans — I’m not wild about the Grove City College ruling, but as long as it’s there, we need to use it.