(PHOENIX) — Authorities in Arizona will shortly begin enforcing the “show me your papers” provision of the state’s controversial immigration law, SB 1070.
U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton ruled on Wednesday that after stopping someone for violating another law, police officers can question the legal status of individuals if they think they might be in the country illegally.
The decision follows a two-year court battle that ended with the U.S. Supreme Court upholding the requirement in June.
In a statement Wednesday, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer hailed the court ruling, saying it’s been a long time coming.
“Today, Arizona is one big step closer to implementing the core provision of SB 1070. I applaud the federal court for siding with the U.S. Supreme Court in refusing to block the most critical section of this law, which will empower state and local law enforcement, as part of a legal stop or detention, to inquire about an individual’s immigration status when the officer has reasonable suspicion,” Brewer said.
“After more than two years of legal challenges, it is time that Section 2(B) of SB 1070 take effect. Given today’s ruling, along with the federal court’s suggestion that it intends in the very near future to formally lift the existing injunction, it is clear the day of implementation is fast approaching,” she continued.
While Brewer said the provision “must be enforced efficiently, effectively and in harmony with the Constitution and civil rights,” critics contend it will lead to racial profiling of Hispanics.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Azadeh Ansari and Joe Sutton, CNN
Jethro Mullen, Ravi Hiranand and Frank Pallotta, CNN