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Immigration law challenge moves forward in Northern District

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U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew P. Rodovich in Hammond Tuesday granted the state’s unopposed motion to lift the stay of a lawsuit in the Northern District challenging portions of Indiana’s immigration law dealing with employment.

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund filed the suit on behalf of Union Benefica Mexican in December 2011 concerning Indiana Code 22-4-39.5 and 22-5-6. Those statutes deal with the verification of one’s eligibility to work in the U.S.

The suit, Union Benefica Mexican v. State of Indiana, et al., 2:11-CV-482, claims the immigration law passed in 2011 violates the Fourth and 11th amendments, the supremacy clause and the contracts clause. The lawsuit focuses on two sections of the new law: one that allows the Department of Workforce Development to file civil actions against employers for reimbursement of unemployment insurance if they knowingly employed illegal immigrants; and a second that prohibits someone from performing day labor without filing an attestation of employment authorization.

The case was put on hold pending the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Arizona v. United States, 11-182. The justices issued their opinion June 25, and Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller filed the motion to lift stay and set deadlines in Union Benefica Mexicana Aug. 6.

The state has until Aug. 31 to respond to Union Benefica Mexicana’s motion for preliminary injunction. The plaintiff has until Sept. 14 to respond to the state’s filings.

Zoeller did concede as a result of Arizona that a warrantless arrest for a removal order, a notice of action, or the commission of an aggravated felony that would subject the arrestee to removal in Indiana is unconstitutional. That issue is part of a lawsuit brought in the Southern District by the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana. Zoeller maintains that other challenged portions, such as the use of consular-issued identification cards, can survive despite the Arizona ruling.

The U.S. Supreme Court found certain portions of Arizona’s tough immigration law to be pre-empted by federal law, including the section that authorizes officers to arrest someone without a warrant whom the officer has probable cause to believe has committed any public offense that makes the person removable..

 

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  1. Hail to our Constitutional Law Expert in the Executive Office! “What you’re not paying attention to is the fact that I just took an action to change the law,” Obama said.

  2. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  3. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  4. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  5. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

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