Two local governments, Texas and Pennsylvania, created ordinances which would prevent undocumented immigrants from being able to rent apartments. This controversial ordinance was appealed and finally made it to the Supreme Court, but the court has refused to hear the case.
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The Supreme Court has made their stance on immigration very clear. They have stated previously that immigration is a federal government issue and local and state laws targeting illegal immigration should be ruled out. This is an important action from the Supreme Court because it urges Congress to take care of the immigration issue through their legislation being worked on currently. It also serves as a warning to local governments to not overstep their boundaries in creating anti-immigrant legislation.
The idea that ordinances are being used to keep undocumented immigrants from finding housing in the U.S. is a form of racial discrimination according to immigrant’s rights groups. These situations beg the question of whether anyone on U.S. soil has basic rights or if someone’s status determines these rights.
Furthermore, if someone can discriminate against individuals on issues of housing, can the same be done with providing services such as food? The Pennsylvania case dealt with this issue where the ordinance denied permits to any businesses who hired people who were in the U.S. illegally. Immigration is a highly political subject currently and the Court makes it clear that they do not support local governments creating laws that they think are right. The rights to immigration laws lie solely with the federal government.
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