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Zoeller Won't Defend Portions Of Indiana's Immigration Law

Supreme Court protestors

The Indiana Attorney General says he will no longer defend portions of Indian’s immigration law being challenged in federal court.

The Supreme Court ruled at the end of June that unwarranted arrests of suspected violators of immigration laws are unconstitutional.

Attorney General Greg Zoeller says the new law applies to Indiana, as well as Arizona, so his office will uphold the precedent set by the higher federal court.

The Attorney General’s Spokesman, Bryan Corbin says this will affect how the AG will defend portions of Indiana’s law currently being decided in federal court.

“Now that we have this guidance from the US Supreme Court, it will be up to the federal district court in Indianapolis to decide whether those provisions can take effect or not,” he says.

Zoeller say portions of Indiana’s law were not specifically struck down by the Arizona ruling, for example the state’s law making it illegal to use a foreign consular identification card for ID purposes. Zoeller says he will no longer challenge that ruling, but leave it for the judge to decide.

Immigration Reform Activist Mike Murphy, who advocates for compassionate immigration laws, says today’s decision by the AG is a positive step for Hoosier immigration reform.

“It was a thoughtful, courageous decision on the part of the Attorney General," he says. "Thoughtful because it recognized the supremacy of the Supreme Court, and the reality that immigration debate which need to occur, needs to occur at the federal level, not the state level.”

One portion of the unwarranted arrest law that was upheld says that local governments can hold individuals for up to 48 hours at the request of a federal agency, a law that has applied not only to immigration cases.

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