United States of America v. Alabama, State of et al
COMPLAINT against Alabama, State of, Robert J Bentley, filed by United States of America.(ASL)
2011 Aug-01 PM 03:10
U.S. DISTRICT COURT
N.D. OF ALABAMA
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
STATE OF ALABAMA & GOVERNOR
ROBERT J. BENTLEY,
) Case No. _____________
Plaintiff, the United States of America, by its undersigned attorneys, brings
this civil action for declaratory and injunctive relief, and alleges as follows:
1. In this action, the United States seeks to declare invalid and preliminarily
and permanently enjoin the enforcement of various provisions of House Bill 56, as
amended and enacted by the State of Alabama, because those provisions 1 are
preempted by federal law and therefore violate the Supremacy Clause of the
United States Constitution.
For brevity’s sake, this Complaint will use the term, “H.B. 56,” to refer to the
challenged provisions of the law except where the context provides otherwise.
2. In our constitutional system, the federal government has preeminent
authority to regulate immigration matters. This authority derives from the United
States Constitution and numerous acts of Congress. The nation’s immigration laws
reflect a careful and considered balance of national law enforcement, foreign
relations, and humanitarian interests. Congress has assigned to the United States
Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, and Department of
State, along with other federal agencies, the task of enforcing and administering
these immigration-related laws. In administering these laws, the federal agencies
balance the complex — and often competing — objectives that animate federal
immigration law and policy. Although a state may exercise its police power in a
manner that has an incidental or indirect effect on aliens, it may not establish its
own immigration policy or enforce state laws in a manner that interferes with the
federal immigration laws. The Constitution and federal immigration laws do not
permit the development of a patchwork of state and local immigration policies
throughout the country.
3. Despite the preeminent federal authority and responsibility over
immigration, the State of Alabama recently enacted H.B. 56, a sweeping set of
provisions that are designed to address numerous aspects of immigration regulation
and enforcement. According to Alabama State Representative and bill co-sponsor
Mickey Hammon, the purpose of the law is “to prevent illegal immigrants from
coming to Alabama and to prevent those who are here from putting down roots.”
Julia Preston, In Alabama, a Harsh Bill for Residents Here Illegally, New York
Times, June 3, 2011.2 Representative Hammon stated that he believed that H.B. 56
would make unlawfully present aliens’ lives “difficult and they will deport
themselves.” Id. H.B. 56’s provisions, working in concert and separately, seek to
punish unlawful entry and presence by requiring, whenever practicable, the
determination of immigration status during any lawful stop by the police where
there is “reasonable suspicion” that an individual is unlawfully present, and by
establishing new state punitive and criminal sanctions against unlawfully present
aliens. The mandate to enforce H.B. 56 to the fullest extent possible is reinforced
by a provision allowing for any legal resident of Alabama to file suit against any
state or local authority that “adopt[s] or implement[s] a policy or practice that
limits or restricts the enforcement of this act to less than the full extent permitted
by this act.” Ala. H.B. 56 § 6(d). Any such authority held liable would face civil
penalties of between $1,000 and $5,000 “for each day that the practice or policy
has remained in effect after the filing of an action” for under-enforcement. Persons
working for state or local authorities have an affirmative duty to report violations
of H.B. 56 where the person has “reasonable cause to believe” that H.B. 56 is
Available at: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/04/us/04immig.html
being violated. A failure to report a violation is a criminal offense. Ala. H.B. 56
4. By emphasizing one goal — maximum enforcement — H.B 56 ignores
the many other objectives that Congress has established for the federal immigration
system. This failure to abide by the set of interests animating federal immigration
law provides sufficient reason that H.B. 56 is preempted. But just as importantly,
even where Alabama appears to pursue one of the goals of the federal system, it
does so to the detriment of other federal immigration priorities, thereby disrupting
federal immigration enforcement and burdening resources that focus on aliens who
pose a threat to national security or public safety.
5. If allowed to go into effect, H.B. 56’s enforcement scheme will conflict
with and undermine the federal government’s careful balance of immigration
enforcement priorities and objectives. For example, it will impose significant and
counterproductive burdens on the federal agencies charged with enforcing the
national immigration scheme, diverting resources and attention from aliens who
pose a threat to public safety or national security that the federal government
targets as its top enforcement priority. The scheme will cause the detention and
harassment of authorized visitors, immigrants, and citizens who do not have or
carry identification documents specified by the statute, or who otherwise will be
swept into the ambit of H.B. 56’s enforcement-at-all-costs approach. It will
conflict with longstanding federal law governing the registration and employment
of aliens. It will also conflict with the administration and enforcement of U.S.
education laws. And it will undermine federal law and invade federal authority by
imposing punitive sanctions for conduct that falls outside of the state’s police
powers and that Congress affirmatively decided should not be subject to such
6. The United States understands the State of Alabama’s legitimate
concerns about illegal immigration, and has undertaken significant efforts to secure
our nation’s borders and to address the problems created by unlawfully present
aliens within our nation’s borders. The federal government, moreover, welcomes
cooperative efforts by states and localities to aid in the enforcement of the nation’s
immigration laws. But the United States Constitution forbids Alabama from
supplanting the federal government’s immigration regime with its own statespecific immigration policy — a policy that, in purpose and effect, interferes with
the numerous interests the federal government must balance when enforcing and
administering the immigration laws and disrupts the balance already established by
the federal government. Accordingly, the provisions set forth below are invalid
under the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution and must be struck
JURISDICTION AND VENUE
7. This action arises under the Constitution of the United States, Article
VI, Clause 2 and Article I, Section 8, and federal immigration laws including, but
not limited to, the Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”), 8 U.S.C. § 1101 et
seq. This Court has jurisdiction over this matter pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331 and
1345, and the United States seeks remedies under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1651, 2201, and
8. Venue lies in the Northern District of Alabama pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 1391(b). Defendants are the Governor of Alabama and the State of Alabama,
both of whom are deemed to reside in the Northern District of Alabama for
purposes of venue. A substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to this
lawsuit occurred or will occur in the Northern District of Alabama.
9. The United States of America is the plaintiff in this action, suing on its
own behalf, as well as on behalf of the United States Department of Homeland
Security (“DHS”), Department of Justice (“DOJ”), the Department of State, and
the Department of Education.
10. DHS is an executive department of the United States. See Homeland
Security Act, Pub. L. No. 107-296, 116 Stat. 2135 (2002). DHS is responsible for
the administration and enforcement of laws relating to immigration, as well as the
investigation of immigration crimes and protection of the United States’ borders
against the illegal entry of aliens. See 8 U.S.C. § 1103. DHS is also responsible
for providing citizenship and immigration services.
11. DOJ is an executive department of the United States. See Act to
Establish the Department of Justice, ch. 150, 16 Stat. 162 (1870). The Attorney
General, as the head of DOJ, shares certain immigration-related responsibilities
with the Secretary of Homeland Security, and he may, among his various
immigration functions, order aliens removed from the United States and order the
cancellation of removal. See, e.g., 8 U.S.C. §§ 1103, 1158, 1182, 1227, 1229a,
12. The Department of State is an executive department of the United
States. See State Department Basic Authorities Act of 1956, Pub. L. No. 84-885,
as amended; 22 U.S.C. § 2651 et seq.
The Department of State is partially
responsible for administering aspects of the federal immigration laws, including
but not limited to the administration of visas.
13. The Department of Education is an executive department of the United
States. See Department of Education Organization Act, 20 U.S.C. § 3401 et seq.
The Department of Education administers elementary and secondary education
programs that provide financial assistance to States, school districts and others,
including but not limited to programs serving students who may be from
immigrant backgrounds and are English learners.
14. Defendant, the State of Alabama, is a state of the United States that
entered the Union as the 22nd State in 1819.
15. Defendant, Governor Robert J. Bentley, is the Governor of Alabama,
and is being sued in his official capacity.
STATEMENT OF THE CLAIM
Federal Authority and Law Governing Immigration and Status of Aliens
16. The Supremacy Clause of the Constitution mandates that “[t]his
Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance
thereof . . . shall be the supreme Law of the Land . . . any Thing in the Constitution
or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.” U.S. Const., art. VI, cl. 2.
The Constitution affords the federal government the power to
“establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization,” U.S. Const., art. I § 8, cl. 4, and to
“regulate Commerce with foreign Nations,” U.S. Const., art. I § 8, cl. 3. Further,
the federal government has broad authority to establish the terms and conditions
for entry and continued presence in the United States, and to regulate the status of
aliens within the boundaries of the United States.
The Constitution affords the President of the United States the
authority to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.” U.S. Const., art. II
§ 3. Further, the President has broad authority over foreign affairs. Immigration
law, policy, and enforcement priorities are affected by and have impacts on U.S.
foreign policy, and are themselves the subject of diplomatic arrangements.
Congress has exercised its authority to make laws governing
immigration and the status of aliens within the United States by enacting the
various provisions of the INA and other laws regulating immigration. Through the
INA, Congress set forth the framework by which the federal government
determines which aliens may be eligible to enter and reside in the United States,
which aliens may be removed from the United States, the consequences for
unlawful presence, the penalties on persons who violate the procedures established
for entry, conditions of residence, and employment of aliens, as well as the process
by which certain aliens may ultimately become naturalized citizens of the United
States. See 8 U.S.C. § 1101 et seq. The INA also vests the executive branch with
considerable discretion in enforcing the provisions of the federal immigration laws,
generally allowing federal agencies to ultimately decide whether particular
immigration remedies are appropriate in individual cases.
In exercising its significant enforcement discretion, the federal
government prioritizes for arrest, detention, prosecution, and removal those aliens
who pose a danger to national security, a risk to public safety, or threaten border
security. Consistent with these enforcement priorities, the federal government
focuses its enforcement resources on aliens engaged in or suspected of terrorism or
espionage; aliens convicted of crimes, with a particular emphasis on violent
criminals, felons, and repeat offenders; certain gang members; aliens subject to
outstanding criminal warrants; and aliens who are repeat re-entrants or fugitives
from immigration courts, especially those with criminal records.
In crafting federal immigration law and policy, Congress has
necessarily taken into account multiple and often competing national interests.
Assuring effective enforcement of the provisions against illegal immigration and
unlawful presence is a highly important interest, but it is not the only goal of the
federal immigration laws. The laws also take into account other uniquely national
interests, including facilitating trade and commerce; welcoming those foreign
nationals who visit or immigrate lawfully and ensuring their fair and equitable
treatment wherever they may reside; responding to humanitarian concerns at the
global and individual levels; and otherwise ensuring that the treatment of aliens
present in our nation does not harm our foreign relations with the countries from
which they come or jeopardize the treatment of U.S. citizens abroad. Because
immigration control and management is “a field where flexibility and the
adaptation of the congressional policy to infinitely variable conditions constitute
the essence of the program,” U.S. ex rel. Knauff v. Shaughnessy, 338 U.S. 537, 543
(1950) (internal citations omitted), Congress vested substantial discretion in the
President and the responsible federal agencies to adjust the balance of these
multiple interests as appropriate — both globally and in individual cases.
Congress has tasked the Executive Branch with overseeing significant
portions of the United States’ immigration interests, and has provided each with
specific powers to promote the various goals of the federal immigration scheme
and to enforce the federal immigration authority under the INA. See 8 U.S.C.
§ 1103. The Department of State is also empowered by the INA to administer
aspects of the federal immigration laws, including visa programs. See, e.g., 8
U.S.C. § 1104. DHS may generally order an alien immediately removed where the
alien either fails to present the appropriate documentation or commits fraud at the
time of the alien’s inspection for admission into the country.
See 8 U.S.C.
§ 1225(b)(1)(A)(i). DHS may also place an alien into removal proceedings, and
may ultimately remove an alien who entered the United States unlawfully or
violated the conditions of his admission. See 8 U.S.C. §§ 1182, 1225, 1227,
1228(b), 1229, 1229a, 1231. DOJ may order an alien removed for many reasons,
including if the alien has stayed in the United States longer than permitted or has
engaged in certain unlawful conduct. See 8 U.S.C. §§ 1227, 1229a. In addition to
removal, the statute authorizes DHS and DOJ to employ civil and criminal
sanctions against an alien for immigration violations, such as unlawful entry,
failing to appropriately register with the federal government, and document fraud.
See, e.g., 8 U.S.C. §§ 1325, 1306, 1324c. However, in the exercise of discretion,
the administering agencies may decide not to apply a specific sanction and may,
among other steps, permit the alien to depart the country voluntarily at his or her
own expense, and may even decide not to pursue removal of the alien if deferred
federal enforcement will help pursue some other goal of the immigration system.
See 8 U.S.C. § 1229c.
Under federal law, both DHS and DOJ may, for humanitarian or other
reasons, decline to exercise certain immigration sanctions or grant an otherwise
unlawfully present or removable alien an immigration benefit — and potentially
adjust that alien’s immigration status — if the alien meets certain conditions. See,
e.g., 8 U.S.C. § 1158 (providing asylum eligibility for aliens who have a well12
founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership
in a particular social group, or political opinion, if removed); 8 U.S.C. § 1254a
(providing temporary protected status for otherwise eligible nationals of a foreign
state that the Secretary of Homeland Security has specially designated as
undergoing ongoing armed conflict, a natural disaster, or another extraordinary
circumstance); 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(1)(E)(iii) (providing discretion to waive ground
of deportability “for humanitarian purposes, to assure family unity, or when it is
otherwise in the public interest” for aliens who are otherwise deportable for
encouraging unlawful entry of an immediate family member); 8 U.S.C. § 1229b
(granting the Attorney General discretion to cancel removal for certain aliens).
DHS also has the authority to permit aliens, including those who would be
inadmissible, to temporarily enter the United States for “urgent humanitarian
reasons” or “significant public benefit.” 8 U.S.C. § 1182(d)(5). DHS may also
refrain from enforcement actions, in appropriate circumstances, against persons
unlawfully present in the United States. See 8 C.F.R. § 274a.12(c)(14) (discussing
In light of these statutory provisions, DHS and DOJ exercise
discretion with respect to, among other things, whether to allow an unlawfully
present alien to voluntarily depart, whether to place an alien into removal
proceedings, whether to exact criminal sanctions on an alien who has committed an
immigration violation, whether to allow an unlawfully present alien to remain in
the country without physical detention during the removal process and whether to
grant an alien humanitarian or some other form of relief. Decisions to forego
removal or criminal penalties result not only from resource constraints, but also
from affirmative policy considerations — including humanitarian and foreign
policy interests — established by Congress and balanced by the executive branch.
Congress, which holds exclusive authority for establishing alien status
categories and the consequences thereof and setting the conditions of aliens’ entry
and continued presence, has affirmatively decided that unlawful presence —
standing alone — should not subject an alien to criminal penalties, incarceration,
or other punitive measures, although unlawful presence may subject the alien to the
civil remedy of removal. See 8 U.S.C. §§ 1182(a)(6)(A)(i), 1227(a)(1)(B)&(C).
However, unlawful presence becomes an element of a criminal offense when an
alien is found in the United States after having been previously removed or after
voluntarily departing from the United States. See 8 U.S.C. § 1326. Further,
unlawful entry into the United States is a criminal offense. See 8 U.S.C. § 1325.
Congress specifically authorized federal immigration officers to patrol the United
States border, as well as search vehicles and lands near the border, to prevent
aliens from unlawfully entering the United States, and it empowered these officers
to arrest an alien who is seen attempting unlawful entry at the border or whom the
officer has reason to believe has unlawfully entered the country and is likely to
escape before a warrant can be obtained. See 8 U.S.C. § 1357.
Congress has created a comprehensive alien registration system for
monitoring the entry and movement of aliens within the United States. See 8
U.S.C. §§ 1201, 1301-1306; see also 8 C.F.R. Part 264 (regulations regarding
“Registration and Fingerprinting of Aliens in the United States”). Under this
federal alien registration system, aliens seeking to enter the United States, either
permanently or temporarily (other than diplomatic and official visitors), must be
registered by the Department of State at the time of visa application. See 8 U.S.C.
§§ 1201(b), 1301, 1302.
Any alien who is 14 years or older, who has not
otherwise been registered and fingerprinted under the INA, and who remains in the
United States for 30 days or longer, must apply to be registered and fingerprinted
by DHS. See 8 U.S.C. § 1302(a). The INA provides that any alien who is required
to apply for registration and willfully fails to do so may be fined and imprisoned
not more than six months. See 8 U.S.C. § 1306(a); 18 U.S.C. § 3571. Aliens are
required to report any change of address to DHS within ten days of such change.
See 8 U.S.C. § 1305.
As part of this federal alien registration system, Congress further
specified the content of the registration forms, see 8 U.S.C. § 1304, what special
circumstances may require deviation, see 8 U.S.C. § 1303, and the confidential
nature of registration information, see 8 U.S.C. § 1304. Aliens who are 18 years
and older are required to carry in their possession their certificate of alien
registration or alien registration receipt card. See 8 U.S.C. § 1304(e). The INA
provides that any alien who fails to comply with this requirement may be fined and
imprisoned not more than 30 days. See id.; 18 U.S.C. § 3571.
However, there are several circumstances in which an alien would not
be provided with evidence of registration notwithstanding the federal government’s
knowledge of the alien’s presence. Federal law provides a variety of humanitarian
options for aliens — including unlawfully present aliens — who have been
victimized or fear persecution or violence, including but not limited to asylum,
special visas for victims of trafficking, and special visas for victims of violent
crime. In order to qualify for such programs an alien needs to apply and satisfy the
criteria that the program at issue requires. During the pendency of the application
process, an alien may not have evidence of registration even though the federal
government is aware of the alien’s presence, has decided against removing the
alien, and has no interest in prosecuting the alien for a crime. These humanitarian
programs demonstrate that one aspect of federal immigration policy is to assist and
welcome such victims in the United States, notwithstanding possible temporary
unlawful presence. It would therefore violate federal policy to prosecute or detain
these types of aliens on the basis of their immigration status — which is often
known to the federal government and, for affirmative policy reasons, not used as
the basis for a removal proceeding or criminal prosecution.
Congress has further exercised its authority over the entry and
movement of aliens by criminalizing the smuggling of unlawful aliens into the
country, as well as the facilitation of unlawful immigration within the nation’s
borders. See 8 U.S.C. § 1324. Specifically, federal law prohibits the knowing
attempt to bring an alien into the United States “at a place other than a designated
port of entry or place other than as designated by the [Secretary of Homeland
Security],” 8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(A)(i), and imposes criminal penalties on a
person who, “knowing or in reckless disregard” of the fact that an alien has
unlawfully entered or remained in the United States, attempts to “transport or
move” the alien within the United States “in furtherance of such violation of law.”
8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(A)(ii). These criminal sanctions are directed at the smuggler
and are not meant to serve as a criminal sanction for the unlawfully present alien or
for incidental transportation. Congress chose not to penalize an unlawfully present
alien’s mere movement within the country or across state lines unless other factors
are present, nor do the federal immigration laws penalize the provision of
transportation services in such situations.
Federal law also imposes criminal penalties on a person who
“conceals, harbors, or shields from detection” an alien in “knowing or in reckless
disregard” of the fact that the alien has unlawfully entered or remained in the
8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(A)(iii).
Similarly, it is unlawful to
“encourage or induce an alien to come to, enter, or reside in the United States,
knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that” such entry or residence will be in
violation of the law. 8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(A)(iv). Federal law does not, as a
general matter, restrict the movement of aliens — whether lawfully or unlawfully
present — between different states. Federal law additionally exempts from certain
of these prohibitions religious organizations which “encourage, invite, call, allow,
or enable” an alien to volunteer as a minister or missionary, and which provide the
alien with basic living expenses. 8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(C).
further exercised its authority over immigration and the status of aliens by
regulating the hiring of aliens not authorized to work in the United States. 8
U.S.C. § 1324a(a)(1). Specifically, federal law makes it unlawful “to hire, or to
recruit or refer for a fee” an alien, knowing that the alien is not authorized to work
in the United States. Id. Federal law also makes it “unlawful for a person or other
entity, after hiring an alien for employment,” to “continue to employ the alien in
the United States knowing the alien is (or has become) an unauthorized alien with
respect to such employment.”
8 U.S.C. § 1324a(a)(2). In addition, Congress
established civil penalties for immigration-related document fraud, such as the
presentation of fraudulent documents to demonstrate work eligibility. 8 U.S.C.
§ 1324c. In enacting penalties on employers of unlawful aliens, as well as on
unlawful aliens who engage in document fraud, Congress chose not to impose
criminal penalties on aliens solely for seeking or obtaining employment in the
United States without authorization and in fact decided that criminal sanctions for
seeking or obtaining employment would run counter to the purposes of the
Although unlawfully present aliens may be subject to
removal, no criminal penalty attaches simply because an alien has solicited or
performed work without proper authorization.
DHS is primarily charged with administering and enforcing the INA
and other laws relating to immigration, which it accomplishes mainly through its
components, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”), U.S. Customs
and Border Protection (“CBP”), and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
(“USCIS”). See 8 U.S.C. § 1103. DHS also receives state and local cooperation in
its enforcement efforts. See, e.g., 8 U.S.C. § 1357(g). In addition, Congress
prescribed by statute a number of ways in which states may assist the federal
government in its enforcement of the immigration laws.
See, e.g., 8 U.S.C.
§ 1103(a)(10) (authorizing DHS to empower state or local law enforcement with
immigration enforcement authority when an “actual or imminent mass influx of
aliens . . . presents urgent circumstances requiring an immediate Federal
response”); 8 U.S.C. § 1357(g)(1)–(9) (authorizing DHS to enter into agreements
to provide appropriately trained and supervised state and local officers with the
authority to perform functions related to the investigation, apprehension, and
detention of aliens); 8 U.S.C. § 1252c (authorizing state and local law enforcement
to arrest aliens who are unlawfully present in the United States and were
previously removed after being convicted of a felony in the United States).
Through a variety of programs, DHS works cooperatively with states
and localities to accomplish its mission to enforce the federal immigration laws.
ICE administers the Law Enforcement Support Center (“LESC”), operational 24
hours a day, 7 days a week, which serves as a national enforcement operations
center and — among other responsibilities — promptly provides immigration
status and identity information to local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies
regarding aliens suspected of, arrested for, or convicted of criminal activity.
Further, ICE and CBP officers respond to requests from state and local law
enforcement officers on a variety of immigration matters, including assisting with
translation, determining alienage, and evaluating immigration documentation.
But the opportunity that federal law provides for cooperation by state
and local officials does not mean that states can enact their own immigration
policies to rival the national immigration policy; the formulation of immigration
policy and balancing of immigration enforcement priorities is a matter reserved for
the federal government.
Such regulations do not fall within the state’s traditional
police powers and remain the exclusive province of the federal government.
Alabama’s H.B. 56
On June 9, 2011, Governor Bentley signed into law H.B. 56, which
contains several provisions designed to work together to discourage and deter the
entry into and presence of unlawful aliens in Alabama through a comprehensive
statute designed to address all aspects of these aliens’ lives. H.B. 56 includes
various provisions, for example, that transform state and local police into
immigration enforcement officers outside of the federal verification scheme: in the
context of any lawful stop where there is “reasonable suspicion” that the individual
is unlawfully present in the United States (Section 12); and in every situation
where an alien is driving without a license (Section 18).
provisions are reinforced through the creation of a private right of action, which
subjects state and local authorities to civil penalties of up $5,000 per day if a court
concludes that “any official or agency . . . [has] adopt[ed] or implement[ed] a
policy” that “limits or restricts the enforcement of federal immigration laws . . . to
less than the full extent permitted by federal law.” (Section 6). H.B. 56 also
creates or amends several state law criminal provisions, which impose criminal
penalties or other punitive sanctions for unlawful status: thus, H.B. 56 criminalizes
an alien’s failure to federally register or carry his federal registration documents –
effectively an effort to criminalize unlawful presence (Section 10). The statute
also creates a criminal sanction for those who provide housing to unlawfully
present aliens or encourage an unlawfully present alien to come to Alabama
(Section 13) H.B. 56 also criminalizes an unlawfully present alien’s attempt to
seek work (Section 11(a)); and subjects employers who employ or retain
unlawfully present aliens to civil penalties and private lawsuits (Sections 16 & 17).
H.B. 56 second-guesses federal immigration policies and attempts
both to re-order federal priorities in the area of immigration enforcement and to
directly regulate immigration and the conditions of an alien’s entry into and
presence in the United States despite the fact that those subjects are federal
domains and do not involve any legitimate state interest. Alabama’s adoption of a
policy focused exclusively on punishing unlawful presence disrupts the national
enforcement regime set forth in the INA and reflected in federal immigration
enforcement policy and practice, including the federal government’s prioritization
of enforcement against aliens who pose a threat to public safety or national
security. Thus, because H.B. 56 attempts to set state-specific immigration policy,
it legislates in an area constitutionally reserved to the federal government, conflicts
with the federal immigration laws and federal immigration policy, and impedes the
accomplishment and execution of the full purposes and objectives of Congress, and
is therefore preempted.
H.B. 56 implements a novel and comprehensive immigration regime
that, among other things, creates a series of state sanctions triggered by an alien’s
unlawful presence. The sanctions range from criminalizing mere presence (Section
10), employment (Sections 11, 16, and 17), and housing and transportation
(Section 13) of aliens, to chilling an alien’s ability to enter into and enforce
agreements central to daily life (Sections 27 and 30) or even to go to school
(Section 28). H.B. 56 further expands the opportunities for Alabama police to
detain aliens under these various crimes by enforcing an immigration status
verification system (Sections 12 and 18), backed up by a private right of action.
By pursuing criminal enforcement and ignoring other objectives embodied in the
federal immigration system (including the federal government’s prioritization of
the removal of dangerous aliens), H.B. 56 conflicts with and otherwise stands as an
obstacle to Congress’s demand for sufficient flexibility in the enforcement of
federal immigration law to accommodate the competing interests of immigration
control, national security and public safety, humanitarian concerns, and foreign
relations — a balance implemented through the supervision and policies of the
President and various executive officers with the discretion to enforce the federal
immigration laws. See 8 U.S.C. § 1101 et seq. Enforcement of H.B. 56 would also
effectively create state crimes and sanctions for unlawful presence despite the
exclusive federal control over the consequences for unlawful presence and
Congress’s considered judgment to establish civil removal — and not
criminalization or other punitive sanction — as the exclusive consequence of
unlawful status. Alabama’s punitive scheme would further undermine federal
foreign policy, in that the federal government has — as a matter of mutual
understandings — established that unlawfully present foreign nationals (who have
not committed some other violation of law) should be removed without criminal
sanction or other punitive measures and that the same treatment should be afforded
to American nationals who are unlawfully present in other countries. H.B. 56
would thus interfere with federal policy and prerogatives in the enforcement of the
U.S. immigration laws, and with the administration and enforcement of U.S.
Numerous other states have passed or are contemplating passing
legislation similar to H.B. 56. The development and implementation of various
conflicting state immigration enforcement policies would result in further and
significant damage to (1) U.S. foreign relations, (2) the United States’ ability to
fairly and consistently enforce the federal immigration laws and provide
immigration-related humanitarian relief, and (3) the United States’ ability to
exercise the discretion vested in the executive branch under the INA, and would
result in the non-uniform treatment of aliens across the United States.
Section 10 of H.B. 56
Section 10 of H.B. 56 makes it a state criminal offense — to be
applied “[i]n addition to any violation of federal law” — for “an alien who is
unlawfully present in the United States” to violate 8 U.S.C. § 1304(e), which
requires every alien to “at all times carry with him and have in his personal
possession any certificate of alien registration or alien registration receipt card
issued to him,” or 8 U.S.C. § 1306(a), which penalizes the willful failure to apply
for registration when required. Section 10 of H.B. 56 provides a state penalty of
up to $100 and up to thirty days imprisonment.
Section 10 of H.B. 56 is preempted by the comprehensive federal
alien registration scheme — including 8 U.S.C. §§ 1201, 1301-1306, and 8 C.F.R.
Part 264 — which provides a “standard for alien registration in a single integrated
and all-embracing system.” Hines v. Davidowitz, 312 U.S. 52, 73 (1941). The
federal scheme provides an extensive array of civil sanctions for aliens unlawfully
present in the United States, and reflects the affirmative choice of Congress not to
have states criminalize unlawful presence. Section 10 of H.B. 56 conflicts with
and otherwise stands as an obstacle to the full purposes and objectives of Congress
in creating a uniform and singular federal alien registration scheme.
Section 10 — the enforcement of which H.B. 56 effectively mandates
through operation of Section 6’s maximal enforcement provision — demands the
arrest and prosecution of all aliens who do not have certain enumerated registration
documents. H.B. 56 thus seeks to criminalize the presence of aliens, including
those whose presence has been accepted by the federal government (at least during
the pendency of their status review) and thereby conflicts with and otherwise
stands as an obstacle to the full purposes and objectives of Congress in providing
certain forms of humanitarian relief.
Additionally, Section 10 of H.B. 56 is tantamount to a regulation of
immigration, in that it seeks to control the conditions of an alien’s entry into and
presence in the United States without serving any traditional state police interest.
Accordingly, Section 10 of H.B. 56 is preempted by the federal government’s
recognized exclusive authority over the regulation of immigration.
Section 11(a) of H.B. 56
Alabama H.B. 56 § 11(a) criminalizes any attempt by “an
unauthorized alien to knowingly apply for work, solicit work in a public or private
place, or perform work as an employee or independent contractor in this state.”
Alabama’s prohibition on unauthorized aliens seeking or performing
work is preempted by the comprehensive federal scheme of sanctions related to the
employment of unauthorized aliens — including 8 U.S.C. §§ 1324a-1324c. The
text, structure, history, and purpose of this scheme reflect an affirmative decision
by Congress to regulate the employment of unlawful aliens by imposing sanctions
on the employer without imposing criminal sanctions on the unlawful alien
Alabama’s criminal sanction on unauthorized aliens stands as an
obstacle to the full purposes and objectives of Congress’s considered approach to
regulating employment practices concerning unauthorized aliens, and it conflicts
with Congress’s decision not to criminalize such conduct for humanitarian and
other reasons. Enforcement of this new state crime additionally interferes with the
comprehensive system of civil consequences for aliens unlawfully present in the
United States by attaching criminal sanctions on the conditions of unlawful
presence, despite an affirmative choice by Congress not to criminalize unlawful
Sections 12(a) & 18 of H.B. 56
Section 12(a) of H.B. 56 mandates that for any lawful “stop, detention
or arrest made by a state, county, or municipal law enforcement official” “in the
enforcement of any state or local law or ordinance,” including civil ordinances,
where reasonable suspicion exists that an individual is an alien and is “unlawfully
present” in the United States, the officer must make a reasonable attempt to
determine the individual’s immigration status when practicable, and to verify it
with the federal government pursuant to 8 U.S.C. § 1373(c), unless such
verification efforts may hinder or obstruct an investigation.
Section 18 amends Alabama’s requirement that motor-vehicle drivers
carry their licenses with them. If a person is arrested for driving without a license,
and the law-enforcement officer cannot confirm that the person has a valid driver’s
license, then the officer must first “transport the person to the nearest or most
accessible magistrate.” Ala. H.B. 56 § 18(b). Next, “[a] reasonable effort shall be
made to determine the citizenship of the person and if an alien, whether the alien is
lawfully present in the United States by verification with the federal government
pursuant to 8 U.S.C. § 1373(c).” Ala. H.B. 56 § 18(c). A verification inquiry must
be made within 48 hours, and if the person is unlawfully present, then he “shall be
considered a flight risk and shall be detained until prosecution or until handed over
to federal immigration authorities.” Ala. H.B. 56 § 18(d). Section 18 places no
limit on how long a person may be detained if federal authorities’ response to the
verification request is delayed.
The mandatory nature of Sections 12 and 18, in combination with
Section 6’s full enforcement provision, directs officers to seek maximum scrutiny
of a person’s immigration status, which will necessarily result in numerous
inspections and detentions of individuals who are lawfully present in the United
Regarding Section 12, verification is mandated for all cases where an
Alabama police officer has a “reasonable suspicion” that a person in a lawful stop
is unlawfully present and it is practicable to do so. But a “reasonable suspicion”
will often rely on factors which equally could be exhibited by lawfully present
aliens or United States citizens. Thus, the Alabama verification scheme will often
result in the verification requirement being applied — wholly unnecessarily — to
lawfully present aliens and United States citizens. Section 12 of H.B. 56 will
therefore impose burdens on lawful immigrants and U.S. citizens alike who are
stopped, questioned, or detained and cannot readily prove their immigration or
citizenship status, including those individuals who may not have an accepted form
of identification because, for example, they are legal minors without a driver’s
license. Alabama’s alien inspection scheme therefore will subject lawful aliens to
the “possibility of inquisitorial practices and police surveillance,” Hines v.
Davidowitz, 312 U.S. 52, 74 (1941) — a form of treatment which Congress has
plainly guarded against in crafting a balanced, federally-directed immigration
Section 18 poses the same risk of unwarranted harassment. Section
18 requires law enforcement to verify with DHS the immigration status of every
alien who is unable to produce a valid driver’s license, regardless of whether the
alien has documentation of lawful status. And because Section 18 does not limit
the amount of time an alien might be detained pending verification, an alien who
cannot produce a valid driver’s license will be at risk of extended detention even
when, in many cases the initial basis for his stop (such as speeding or having a
broken tail light), would not have led to detention at all. Thus, on its face, Section
18 appears to place a burden on lawfully present aliens that is distinct from the
burden it places on U.S. citizens engaged in the same conduct. Further, Section 18
requires law enforcement to verify with DHS the immigration status of every alien
simply as a result of the alien’s inability to produce a valid driver’s license,
regardless of whether the alien has documentation of lawful status.
Alabama’s state alien inspection scheme and attendant federal
verification requirements will impermissibly impair and burden the federal
resources and activities of DHS.
The mandate in Sections 12 and 18 for
verification of alien status will necessarily result in a dramatic increase in the
number of verification requests being issued to DHS — many of which will result
from violations of non-criminal ordinances — and will thereby place a tremendous
burden on DHS resources, necessitating a reallocation of DHS resources away
from its policy priorities. As such, the federal government will be required to
divert resources from its own, carefully considered enforcement primary priorities
— aliens who pose a threat to national security and public safety — to address the
work that Alabama will now create for it — verification of individuals who are
caught driving without a license or jaywalking. Such interference with federal
priorities, driven by state-imposed burdens on federal resources, constitutes a
violation of the Supremacy Clause. Sections 12 and 18 therefore conflict with and
otherwise stand as an obstacle to the full purposes and objectives of Congress, and
their enforcement would further conflict with the enforcement prerogatives and
priorities of the federal government. Moreover, Sections 12 and 18 do not promote
any legitimate state interest.
Section 13 of H.B. 56
Section 13(a)(1) of H.B. 56 criminalizes any act, attempt, or
conspiracy to “[c]onceal, harbor, or shield . . . an alien from detection in any place
in this state . . . if the person knows or recklessly disregards the fact that the alien
has come to, has entered, or remains in the United States in violation of federal
law.” It is also a crime to “[e]ncourage or induce an alien to come to or reside in
this state if the person knows or recklessly disregards the fact that such coming to,
entering, or residing in the United States is or will be in violation of federal law.”
Ala. H.B. 56 §§ 13(a)(2).
Section 13(a)(3) criminalizes the transportation,
attempted transportation, or conspiracy to transport “an alien in furtherance of the
unlawful presence of the alien in the United States,” provided that the person
knows or recklessly disregards that the alien is unlawfully present.
13(a)(4) of H.B. 56. makes it a crime to “[h]arbor an alien unlawfully present in
the United States by entering into a rental agreement, as defined by Section 35-9A141 3 of the Code of Alabama 1975, with an alien to provide accommodations, if
the person knows or recklessly disregards the fact that the alien is unlawfully
Section 35-9A-141 defines “rental agreement” as any agreement “embodying the terms
and conditions concerning the use and occupancy of a dwelling unit and premises.”
present in the United States.” A violation of Section 13 will generally be a Class
A misdemeanor. Ala. H.B. 56 § 13(b).
Alabama’s anti-harboring provisions are preempted by federal law,
including 8 U.S.C. § 1324. Congress has explicitly regulated the smuggling,
transportation, harboring, and concealment of aliens via § 1324, but that scheme
does not impose, or even contemplate, any conditions restricting unlawfully
present aliens’ access to housing, much less the extensive restrictions imposed by
H.B. 56. If anything, the INA assumes that an unlawfully present alien will
generally have a reliable address. See 8 U.S.C. § 1229(a)(1)(F)(i) (explaining that
an alien noticed to appear for a removal proceeding must immediately provide the
Attorney General “with a written record of an address . . . at which the alien may
be contacted respecting [the] proceeding.”).
And, more broadly, the INA
contemplates that unlawfully present aliens will be subject to an orderly, civil
removal process initiated by the federal government. This removal process would
be undermined by a state law making it a criminal offense to rent housing to these
aliens because the law would deny unlawfully present aliens the ability to reside in
Alabama’s anti-harboring prohibitions constitute a preempted
regulation of immigration because they attempt to establish the consequences of
unlawful presence and to criminalize the process of alien entry and residence.
Additionally, these provisions will result in special, impermissible burdens for
lawfully present aliens, who will predictably be impaired from finding housing due
to the strictures of Section 13(a)(4). Section 13(a)(4) thus conflicts with and
otherwise stands as an obstacle to the full purposes and objectives of Congress in
creating a comprehensive system of penalties for aliens who are unlawfully present
in the United States, which has never included a systematic denial of housing.
Because the purpose of this law is to deter and prevent the movement
of certain aliens into Alabama, the law also restricts interstate commerce.
Enforcement and operation of Section 13 would therefore conflict and interfere
with the federal government’s management of interstate commerce, and would
thereby violate Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution.
Sections 16 & 17 of H.B. 56
Section 16(a) of Ala. H.B. 56 provides:
No wage, compensation, whether in money or in kind or in services,
or remuneration of any kind for the performance of services paid to an
unauthorized alien shall be allowed as a deductible business expense
for any state income or business tax purposes in this state. This
subsection shall apply whether or not an Internal Revenue Service
Form 1099 is issued in conjunction with the wages or remuneration.
And Section 16(b) provides:
Any business entity or employee who knowingly fails to comply with the
requirements of this section shall be liable for a penalty equal to 10 times the
business expense deduction claimed in violation of subsection (a). The
penalty provided in this subsection shall be payable to the Alabama
Department of Revenue.
Section 17(a) provides:
It shall be a discriminatory practice for a business entity or employer
to fail to hire a job applicant who is a United States citizen or an alien
who is authorized to work in the United States as defined in 8 U.S.C.
§ 1324a(h)(3) or discharge an employee working in Alabama who is a
United States citizen or an alien who is authorized to work in the
United States as defined in 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(h)(3) while retaining or
hiring an employee who the business entity or employer knows, or
reasonably should have known, is an unauthorized alien.
And Section 17(b) provides that “[a] violation of subsection (a) may be the basis of
a civil action in the state courts of this state.” A prevailing party may recover both
compensatory relief and reasonable attorney’s fees.
In the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (“IRCA”),
Congress has established a statutory scheme that establishes, among other things,
employer-directed sanctions for unauthorized employment.
IRCA states in
pertinent part that:
The provisions of this section preempt any State or local law imposing
civil or criminal sanctions (other than through licensing and similar
laws) upon those who employ, or recruit or refer for a fee for
employment, unauthorized aliens.
8 U.S.C. § 1324a(h)(2).
By Sections 16 and 17, Alabama seeks to impose sanctions on
employers or potential employers of unlawfully present aliens. Because these
sanctions do not fall within IRCA’s licensing savings clause, they are expressly
Sections 27 & 30 of H.B. 56
Subject to certain limited exceptions, Section 27(a) states that:
No court of this state shall enforce the terms of, or otherwise regard as
valid, any contract between a party and an alien unlawfully present in
the United States, if the party had direct or constructive knowledge
that the alien was unlawfully present in the United States at the time
the contract was entered into, and the performance of the contract
required the alien to remain unlawfully present in the United States
for more than 24 hours after the time the contract was entered into or
performance could not reasonably be expected to occur without such
Section 30 makes it a new felony for an unlawfully present alien, or
anyone acting on behalf of an unlawfully present alien, to “enter into or attempt to
enter into a business transaction with the state or a political subdivision of the
state.” Ala. H.B. 56 § 30(b). Section 30(a) broadly defines the term “business
transaction” to include:
any transaction between a person and the state or a political subdivision of
the state, including, but not limited to, a person applying for or renewing a
motor vehicle license plate, applying for or renewing a driver’s license or
nondriver identification card, or applying for or renewing a business license.
“Business transaction” does not include applying for a marriage license.
Any person who wants to enter into such a “business transaction” must provide
proof of lawful residence. Ala. H.B. 56 § 30(c). By its own terms, this provision
makes it a felony to engage in any transaction with a state instrumentality. These
provisions impose different and more punitive restrictions on aliens than Congress
intended. Section 27 chills the ability of unlawfully present aliens (as well as
lawfully present aliens and some United States citizens) to make and enforce
otherwise valid contracts. By interfering with this right, Section 27 is exposing
unlawfully present aliens to widespread commercial abuse — despite Congress’s
specific effort to regulate immigration so as to protect foreign nationals (whether
lawfully or unlawfully present) from such abuse. See, e.g., 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(g)(1)
(prohibiting employers from forcing employees to post bonds indemnifying the
employers against IRCA liability).
Section 30 transforms otherwise lawful
conduct (engaging or attempting to engage with state or local governments in a
wide swath of circumstances) into criminal conduct only by virtue of who is
performing it. Under Section 30, unlawfully present aliens would commit felonies
by engaging in transactions essential to Alabama residence, such as paying for
county water service or remitting municipal property taxes.
treatment conflicts with Congress’s determination that unlawful presence should
result in civil rather than criminal sanctions, and United States foreign policy,
which seeks similar treatment for American nationals who travel abroad. Because
the power to decide the terms and conditions applicable to aliens’ stay is within the
exclusive province of the federal government, Sections 27 and 30 are preempted.
Section 28 of H.B. 56
Section 28 of H.B. 56 requires all public elementary and secondary
schools to determine
whether the student enrolling in public school was born outside the
jurisdiction of the United States or is the child of an alien not lawfully
present in the United States and qualifies for assignment to an English
as Second Language class or other remedial program.
Ala. H.B. 56 § 28(a)(1). To make this determination, the school “shall rely
upon presentation of the student’s original birth certificate, or a certified
copy thereof.” Id., § 28(a)(2).
Section 28 further provides that:
[i]f, upon review of the student’s birth certificate, it is determined that
the student was born outside the jurisdiction of the United States or is
the child of an alien not lawfully present in the United States, or
where such certificate is not available for any reason, the parent,
guardian, or legal custodian of the student shall notify the school
within 30 days of the date of the student’s enrollment of the actual
citizenship or immigration status of the student under federal law.
Ala. H.B. 56 § 28(a)(3). The Act further specifies that, for purposes of § 28(a)(3),
notification shall consist of both of:
a. The presentation for inspection, to a school official designated for
such purpose by the school district in which the child is enrolled, of
official documentation establishing the citizenship and, in the case of
an alien, the immigration status of the student, or alternatively by
submission of a notarized copy of such documentation to such
b. Attestation by the parent, guardian, or legal custodian, under
penalty of perjury, that the document states the true identity of the
Ala. H.B. 56 § 28(a)(4). If the student or his or her parent, guardian, or legal
representative possesses no such documentation but nevertheless maintains that the
student is either a United States citizen or an alien lawfully present in the United
States, the parent, guardian, or legal representative of the student may sign a
declaration so stating, under penalty of perjury. Id.
“If no such documentation or declaration is presented, the school
official shall presume for the purposes of reporting under this section that the
student is an alien unlawfully present in the United States.” Ala. H.B. 56
§ 28(a)(5). The Act provides that “[v]erification of lawful presence in the United
States shall not be required for . . . primary or secondary school education, and
state or local public benefits that are listed in 8 U.S.C. Section 1621(b).”
The Act requires each school district to “collect and compile data as
required by this section,” and to “submit to the State Board of Education an annual
report listing all data obtained pursuant to this section.” Id., § 28(a)(5)(b)-(c). In
turn, the Alabama Board of Education must use this information to prepare an
annual report detailing the numbers of U.S. citizens, and lawfully present and
unlawfully present aliens enrolled in public schools, and analyze the impact on
education and the costs to the state imposed by unlawfully present alien-students. 4
Ala. H.B. 56 § 28 (d). Aside from a general prohibition on public disclosure, see
Ala. H.B. 56 § 28(e), Section 28 does permit any interference with
enforcement. See also 8 U.S.C. § 1373(b) (“no person or agency may prohibit, or
in any way restrict, a Federal, State, or local government entity from . . .
exchanging . . . with any other Federal, State, or local government entity”
“information regarding the immigration status, lawful or unlawful, of any
In light of the collection and reporting requirements that Section 28
imposes, many classes of parents may choose to keep their children from attending
school. Most obviously, parents who know their children are unlawfully present
This report would not specify the names or otherwise identify those individuals
presumed to be unlawful aliens, as the annual report would provide data “aggregated by public
school.” Ala. H.B. 56 § 28(a)(5)(d)(2).
may choose to keep their children home, rather than have their status reported to
school authorities. Furthermore, some parents or guardians may not be able to
provide the documentation Section 28 requires or fear the consequences of sending
their children to school under a presumption of unlawful presence. For example,
some parents may not have any official documentation of their child’s lawful
And, given the myriad designations and rules governing federal
immigration status, some of those parents may not be in a position to declare,
under penalty of perjury, their children’s immigration status. Thus, such parents or
guardians may choose to withdraw their children from school to avoid having to
choose between possibly perjuring themselves, with all the consequences that
might entail (or that the parent fears such perjury might entail for themselves or
their children, or both). Because Section 28 will lead to the harassment of lawfully
present and unlawfully present aliens, it is preempted.
Alabama, by its mandatory data collection, classification, and
reporting requirements, has impermissibly established a registration scheme for
aliens — one that has no counterpart under federal law and was not contemplated
Without any precondition, Section 28 explicitly commands the
parents of children who are born outside the United States to produce
documentation and submit a declaration (under penalty of perjury) verifying the
citizenship of their children.
This state-addendum to the federal system for
tracking and verifying alien status demands precisely the type of “indiscriminate
and repeated interception and interrogation by public officials”— here, the officials
of the Alabama school system — that the Supreme Court described as outside of
the state’s police powers, as a danger to federal foreign relations, and as preempted
by federal law. Hines, 312 U.S. at 65-66.
Furthermore, Section 28’s state-level verification immigration scheme
will be error-prone. Many parents of lawfully present children may not be in a
position to provide the attestations and declarations Section 28 contemplates
because of language issues, a lack of familiarity with the legal system, or fear of
disclosing their own immigration status. Other parents, unsure of their children’s
immigration status, may not be able to provide a sworn statement. Thus, Section
28’s reliance on parental reporting means that many lawfully present children will
be reported as unlawfully present.
By reason of the foregoing, defendants’ actions have caused and will
continue to cause substantial and irreparable harm to the United States for which
plaintiff has no adequate remedy except by this action.
FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION – VIOLATION OF THE SUPREMACY
Plaintiff incorporates paragraphs 1 through 67 of the Complaint as if
fully stated herein.
Sections 10, 11(a), 12(a), 13, 27, 28, and 30 of H.B. 56, taken in
whole and in part, represent an impermissible effort by Alabama to establish its
own immigration policy and to directly regulate the immigration status of aliens.
In particular, these sections conflict with federal law and foreign policy, disregard
federal policies, interfere with federal enforcement priorities in areas committed to
the discretion of plaintiff United States, and otherwise impede the accomplishment
and execution of the full purposes and objectives of federal law and foreign policy.
Sections 10, 11(a), 12(a), 13, 16, 17, 18, 27, 28, and 30 of H.B. 56
violate the Supremacy Clause, and are invalid.
SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION – PREEMPTION UNDER FEDERAL LAW
Plaintiff incorporates paragraphs 1 through 70 of the Complaint as if
fully stated herein.
Sections 10, 11(a), 12(a), 13, 16, 17, 18, 27, 28, and 30 of H.B. 56 are
preempted by federal law, including 8 U.S.C. § 1101 et seq.
THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION – VIOLATION OF THE COMMERCE
Plaintiff incorporates paragraphs 1 through 72 of the Complaint as if
fully stated herein.
Section 13 of H.B. 56 restricts the interstate movement of aliens in a
manner that is prohibited by Article One, Section Eight of the Constitution.
Section 13 of H.B. 56 violates the Commerce Clause, and is therefore
PRAYER FOR RELIEF
WHEREFORE, the United States respectfully requests the following relief:
A declaratory judgment stating that Sections 10, 11(a), 12(a), 13, 16,
17, 18, 27, 28, and 30 of H.B. 56 are invalid, null, and void;
A preliminary and a permanent injunction against the State of Alabama,
and its officers, agents, and employees, prohibiting the enforcement of Sections 10,
11(a), 12(a), 13, 16, 17, 18, 27, 28, and 30 of H.B. 56;
That this Court award the United States its costs in this action; and
That this Court award any other relief it deems just and proper.
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