Good guys wear white hats
- Aug 23, 2011
- Reaction score
- Bham, AL
Federal judge blocks Ala. illegal immigration law
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - A federal judge temporarily blocked enforcement of Alabama's new law cracking down on illegal immigration, ruling Monday that she needed more time to decide whether the law opposed by the Obama administration, church leaders and immigrant-rights groups is constitutional.
The brief order by U.S. District Judge Sharon L. Blackburn means the law - which opponents and supporters alike have called the toughest in the nation - won't take effect as scheduled on Thursday. The ruling was cheered both by Republican leaders who were pleased the judge didn't gut the law and by opponents who compare it to old Jim Crow-era statutes against racial integration.
Blackburn didn't address whether the law is constitutional, and she could still let all or parts of the law take effect later. Instead, she said she needed more time to consider lawsuits filed by the Justice Department, private groups and individuals that claim the state is overstepping its bounds.
The judge said she will issue a longer ruling by Sept. 28, and her temporary order will remain in effect until the day after. She heard arguments from the Justice Department and others during a daylong hearing last week.
Similar laws have been passed in Arizona, Utah, Indiana and Georgia. Federal judges already have blocked all or parts of the laws in those states.