Oklahoma’s tough immigration stance fight over

A federal judge signed an agreement last week that puts an end to a four-year legal battle between the state of Oklahoma and the US Chamber of Commerce over the former’s tough anti-illegal immigrant law.

The judgment, which was signed by District Judge Robin Cauthon, effectively accepts the 10th Circuit US Court of Appeals’ 2010 ruling that blocked certain parts of the law from being enforced. Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt A federal judge signed an agreement last week that puts an end to a four-year legal battle between the state of Oklahoma and the US Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber requested the settlement.

Pruitt says that the agreement puts in place what had already been decided regarding the immigration issue by the US Supreme Court and the appeals court, noting that “We can now shift our focus to implementing and enforcing the law.” There was no immediate comment from Chamber spokesman Bobby Maldonado.

The immigration law in Oklahoma was seen as being one of the strictest in the whole of the United States when the legislature adopted it and saw it sworn into law by the then-Governor Brad Henry in 2007.

Among other things, it allowed the state to demand the use of a net-based system employment authorization for public contractors, while also seeking to be able to subject businesses to financial penalties if they hired illegal immigrants. It also had the right to dictate who could and could not be dismissed and demanded contractors withhold taxes for any workers who lacked the proper documentation.

While the new agreement allows the state to demand the use of the electronic verification system for employees, it forbids them from taking legal sanctions against employers or withholding taxes.