Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Reid: Court ruling on Arizona paves path to racial profiling

WASHINGTON — The Senate's top Democrat says the Supreme Court's decision on Arizona's immigration law opens the way to racial profiling by police.

Nevada Sen. Harry Reid said after Monday's decision that the high court was right to strike down most of Arizona's immigration law, which President Barack Obama and many Democrats say is unconstitutional. But Reid said he is concerned that the high court upheld one provision that requires police to check immigration papers of people they stop for other violations.

That, Reid said predicted, "will lead to a system of racial profiling." The decision upholds the "show me your papers" requirement for the moment. But it takes the teeth out of it by prohibiting police officers from arresting people on minor immigration charges. About 11 million immigrants reside illegally in the U.S.

Ariz. gov: ruling a 'victory' for all Americans 

PHOENIX — Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer says the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to uphold part of the state's illegal immigration law is a victory for all Americans.

Despite the court striking down key provisions of the statute Monday, Brewer says the heart of the law can now be enacted. The court ruled that one part of the law requiring police to check the status of someone they suspect is not in the U.S. legally could go forward. However, the court ruled against provisions, including arresting people on minor immigration charges.

Brewer says law enforcement that use the law to violate a person's civil rights will be held accountable.

Here are the sections of Arizona's immigration law considered by the U.S. Supreme Court:


  • A requirement that police, while enforcing other laws, question people's immigration status if officers have reasonable suspicion they're in the country illegally.


  • A requirement that all immigrants obtain or carry immigration registration papers.
  • A provision making it a state criminal offense for an illegal immigrant to seek work or hold a job.
  • A provision that would allow police to arrest suspected illegal immigrants without warrants.
The Associated Press (“AP”) is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. On any given day, more than half the world’s population sees news from the AP. Founded in 1846, the AP today is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. The AP considers itself to be the backbone of the world’s information system, serving thousands of daily newspaper, radio, television, and online customers with coverage in text, photos, graphics, audio and video.