Feathered Bastard

SB 1070 Oral Arguments on "Papers Please" Section Scheduled for August 21

See also: ACLU Seeks New Injunction on "Papers Please" Portion of SB 1070 See also: SB 1070, SCOTUS, Friendly House, and a Ray of Hope See also: Russell Pearce's Falsehoods, Inaccuracies and Inventions on Channel 12's Sunday Square-Off See also: Russell Pearce Scores Another Win Against Hispanics, Most Local Activists Are No-Shows, Only Daniel Patterson Shines Coming full circle from two years ago when she enjoined the most troubling parts of Senate Bill 1070, U.S. District Court Judge Susan R. Bolton has scheduled oral arguments for Tuesday, August 21, on a motion from the plaintiffs in Valle del Sol v. Whiting, asking that she maintain an injunction on section 2(b), the so-called "papers please" portion of the law.

Bolton's original injunction issued July 28, 2010, remains in effect, for now. At that time, she ruled that 2(b), along with three other sections were likely preempted by federal immigration law.

Her injunction in United States v. Arizona was appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, which agreed that three sections of 1070 were preempted.

But the high court let 2(b) survive, finding that Bolton should not have issued an injunction on the narrow grounds of preemption.

The Supremes left open the possibility that 2(b) might be challenged on other grounds, even as it sent the case back to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which in turn agreed with lifting the stay and passed the buck back to Bolton.

Meanwhile, the ACLU, MALDEF, the National Immigration Law Center, and other plaintiffs in Valle del Sol, which like U.S. v. Arizona contends that 1070 is unconstitutional, are seeking to have Bolton maintain an injunction on 2(b), on the grounds that it violates both the Fourth Amendment's prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizures, and the Fourteenth Amendment's equal protection clause, which bars racial profiling.

Valle del Sol plaintiffs also are looking to have a harboring provision of 1070 enjoined, and it's worth noting that in February Bolton blocked the enforcement of two 1070 provisions dealing with day laborers.

But since 2(b) requires cops to check immigration status on any lawful stop if there is "reasonable suspicion" to believe the detainee is in the country illegally, the rumble to watch will once more be at the Sandra Day O'Connor U.S. Courthouse in downtown Phoenix come Tuesday at 10 a.m.

I've already written about the plaintiffs motion to enjoin. And the plaintiffs' exhibits, particularly a slew of racist e-mails and statements made by 1070's Big Daddy, disgraced, recalled state Senate President Russell Pearce, have opened the local media's eyes to the fact that 1070 -- hang onto your pajamas -- is a racist law created with a bigoted intent.

As that great philosopher Gomer Pyle might have exclaimed, "Shazam!"

But the media is dense, and, to judge by the recent response of the defendants' attorneys in Valle del Sol, so are high-priced legal beagles ensconced in big, money-grubbing law firms.

As was reported just before the Supremes ruled on June 25, Governor Jan Brewer's law dogs at Snell & Wilmer by then had woofed up some $2.3 million in fees defending 1070, fortunately from donated funds, so far.

I'm not impressed with what these millions have purchased, particularly when it comes to the firm's latest reply in Valle del Sol.

Not that I'm complaining. First off, it's not my dough. And secondly, I want Brewer to continue her losing streak when it comes to Arizona's ethnic cleansing law.

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Stephen is a former staff writer and columnist at Phoenix New Times.
Contact: Stephen Lemons