AILA ED: Harmful Texas Legislation Will Damage the State and Infringe on Federal Authority
WASHINGTON, DC – Texas Governor Greg Abbott has signed harmful anti-immigrant bills into law this week. AILA Executive Director Ben Johnson responded with the following statement:
“Once again, the Texas governor has signed legislation that attempts to transform how immigration laws and policy are enforced and stands in clear violation of the U.S. Constitution. The bills target immigrants in different ways. One appropriates more than $1.5 billion for border spending and state policing in areas that are populated by immigrants. Another makes it a state misdemeanor to cross the border from Mexico into Texas outside a port of entry, despite the fact that it is legal to enter the country to claim asylum. Moreover, amendments that would have required that police and prosecutors find out if an immigrant arrested under the new law is in the country legally before the case is prosecuted weren’t adopted. Undoubtedly that will mean that people will be illegally deprived of their liberty.
This bill is a replica of Arizona’s infamous ‘show me your papers’ law (SB1070) that was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 2012. As was true then, this new law will obviously lead to racial profiling of U.S. Citizens and residents. Attempting to enshrine this sort of fearmongering and hatred into law for political gain is petty and opportunistic. Instead of political grandstanding and further dividing people, elected leaders should be working together at the state and federal level to pursue sensible, effective solutions to address the challenges at the border. AILA stands with our partners who have filed litigation to stand up against this latest injustice in court.”