The legal fight over the illegal immigration law in the state of Georgia has already become a long running saga, and could go on for even longer if officials decide to appeal their case to the US Supreme Court. Georgia officials yesterday claimed that they were still considering their options following the decision by Atlanta’s 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to reject their request for another hearing in the case.
The appeals court had been asked by the state to reconsider their stance against part of a law that would hand out punishments to anyone who knowingly harbored or transported illegal immigrants whilst committing other crimes. Three months ago back in August the court ruled that federal law pre-empts the measure and already prohibits such activities.
A different part of the statute – which has been given the nickname of the “show-me-your-papers” law – has been kept on hold whilst the appeals court was hearing the case. This provision gives police the option to be able to investigate suspects’ immigration status if they believe they have committed a state or federal crime and who cannot provide identification or proof of citizenship.
The state has another 90 days in which it can appeal to the US Supreme Court, which could again put the “show-me-your-papers” law on hold until the Supreme Court makes a decision. “We are considering our options and no decisions have been made at this time,” says the Georgia Attorney General’s office.