July 23, 2014

Both sides agree immigration issue remains unresolved (AUDIO)

It isn’t clear how the Supreme Court ruling on Arizona’s immigration law could affect Nebraska, but both sides say the ruling leaves the issue of illegal immigration unresolved.

Not much is left of the Arizona law, with the Supreme Court ruling that states cannot encroach on federal immigration laws.

Nebraska Appleseed’s Darcy Tromanhauser praises the court for ruling the country cannot have multiple approaches to immigration.

“So, there are certain things that it just doesn’t make sense to have this confusing patchwork of state-level systems,” Tromanhauser says.

Tromanhauser says Nebraska Appleseed expects the final aspect of the Arizona law to eventually be thrown out by the courts. The court has upheld, for now, the portion that authorizes police to ask for documentation of suspects who they arrest. The so-called “show me your papers” provision is being challenged in a civil lawsuit that hasn’t reached the Supreme Court.

Tromanhauser claims states have shied from the Arizona approach after seeing negative outcomes in Arizona and Alabama.

An effort by Sen. Charlie Janssen of Fremont to pass an Arizona-style law through the Unicameral failed. Janssen says the Supreme Court ruling ensures that he won’t be trying the same approach next session if he wins re-election. Janssen says he’s encouraged that the Supreme Court ruled states can work with federal officials in enforcing immigration laws. And Janssen says he agrees with the ruling that immigration is a federal issue and says therein lies the problem, because the federal government won’t enforce the law and Congress refuses to act.

“And, frankly, in reading the opinion, I think certain justices were saying, ‘Get off your backside and start doing something about it,’” Janssen says.

Both Janssen and Tromanhauser spoke about the issue on Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN’s Jack and John Show.

AUDIO: Brent Martin reports. [:45]