A federal judge refused to block key parts of Alabama's immigration law on Wednesday, which some call the nation's toughest, including a measure that requires immigration status checks of public school students.
U.S. District Judge Sharon Blackburn, appointed by Republican President George H.W. Bush, wrote in her 115-page opinion that some parts of the law are in conflict with federal statutes, but others aren't.
She said federal law doesn't prohibit checking students or suspects pulled over by police. She also refused to stop provisions that allow police to hold suspected undocumented immigrants without bond; bar state courts from enforcing contracts involving undocumented immigrants; make it a felony for an undocumented immigrant to do business with the state; and make it a misdemeanor for an undocumented resident not to have immigration papers.
Blackburn's order temporarily blocked four parts of the law until she can issue a final ruling. Those measures would:
— Make it a crime for an undocumented immigrant to solicit work.
— Make it a crime to transport or harbor an undocumented immigrant.
— Allow discrimination lawsuits against companies that dismiss legal workers while hiring undocumented immigrants.
— Forbid businesses from taking tax deductions for wages paid to workers who are in the country illegally.