Alleging that Alabama’s sweeping immigration law, H.B. 56, unconstitutionally infringes on the federal government’s “exclusive authority over immigration,” the U.S. Department of Justice recently filed a motion asking the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to stop the law from being enforced.
The DOJ asked the court for this injunction against H.B. 56 while the federal government appeals a ruling recently handed down by a judge in Montgomery that most of the law can go into effect.
Among the law’s controversial provisions, it calls on schools to ascertain the citizenship status of students and empowers law enforcement officers to request immigration documentation of any suspected criminal.
After Judge Sharon Blackburn’s September 28 ruling that most of H.B. 56 can take effect, a rash of absences at Hunstville schools prompted the city’s superintendent to go on Spanish-language TV to assure parents no enforcement actions will be taken based on students’ reported immigration status.
State Senator Bill Beasley, Democrat from Clayton, has drafted legislation to repeal H.B. 56 in the next legislative session. The bill’s sponsor, Republican Sen. Scott Beason of Gardendale, says he will fight repeal because the law is proving effective in relocating undocumented workers outside the state, The Associated Press reported.