By a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the U.S. government in the case Arizona v. United States.
The Arizona statute, know as S.B. 1070, was enacted in 2010 in an attempt to deal with the large number of unlawful aliens in the state.
Three of the four provisions in question were found to be in conflict with power held by the federal government.
The court struck down the provisions requiring all immigrants to carry or obtain paper of legal registration, making it a criminal offense for illegal immigrants to seek or hold a work position, and allowing police to arrest those suspected of being illegal immigrants without a warrant.
However, the court did uphold the prevision requiring state and local officers to check a persons immigration status while enforcing other laws if “reasonable suspicion” exists that the person in question is an illegal alien.
According to CNN’s John King, opponents of the bill feel that the portion of the bill that was upheld requires the officers to participate in “racial profiling”.
Arizona Attorney General Tome Horne said, “We want to be sure there is not racial profiling.”
Despite the question over racial profiling a poll conducted May 29-31 by CNN/ORC found that 75 percent were in favor of the bill while 24 percent opposed it.
According to an article by the Associated Press five states — Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, South Carolina and Utah — have adopted laws similar to the Arizona law. Parts of those laws have been on hold pending the outcome of the Supreme Court case.