Federal judge temporarily blocks Iowa's anti-immigration law that would have allowed arrest and deportation of some undocumented immigrants

A federal judge on Monday temporarily blocked an Iowa law that allowed state authorities to file criminal charges against people with outstanding deportation orders or who were previously denied entry to the United States.

District Court Judge Stephen Locher issued a preliminary injunction after finding that the judiciary and civil rights groups suing the state would prevail in their contention that a federal immigration law passed by Iowa lawmakers this spring would end the law.

“Politically, the new law may be defensible,” Locher wrote in his conclusion. “As a matter of constitutional law, it doesn't.”

The measure was supposed to take effect on July 1, but the Justice Department challenged it in court in May.

The law raised concerns Iowa has raised questions among immigrant communities and legal experts and authorities on how it will be used.

In Iowa and across the country, Republican leaders have accused President Joe Biden of shirking his responsibilities to enforce federal immigration law, prompting Republican governors to send troops to Texas and legislatures to propose different strategies at the state level.

“The Biden administration has failed to enforce our nation's immigration laws, putting the safety and security of Iowans at risk,” Reynolds said in a statement after signing the bill. “This bill Iowa empowers officials to do what he doesn't want to do: Enforce existing immigration laws.

Criminal charges against some immigrants

The Iowa law can be similar to the Texas law Criminal charges against persons with a deportation order Those who are pending or have previously been deported or denied entry into the United States. Once detained, immigrants can either accept a judge's order to leave the country or sue.

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Judge's order You must identify the mode of transportation to leave the United States and a law enforcement officer or Iowa agency to monitor the immigrant's departure. Those who do not leave may be rearrested under serious charges.

The bill in Iowa faces Same implementation and compliance issues as Texas lawDeportation is a “complicated, expensive and often dangerous” federal process, said Huey Pham, an immigration law expert at Texas A&M College of Law.

Meanwhile, Iowa immigrant community groups are organizing meetings and informational materials to answer people's questions. They request official reports and face-to-face meetings from local and county law enforcement agencies.

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Eden Hayes

"Wannabe gamer. Subtly charming beer buff. General pop culture trailblazer. Incurable thinker. Certified analyst."

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