A federal judge threw out a lawsuit by state Attorney General Ken Paxton to declare the new statute constitutional, but a parallel case remains pending in another court.
A federal judge dismissed the state of Texas’ lawsuit against Austin, Tx., Travis County and other defendants over the state’s new immigration enforcement law, reports the Texas Tribune. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a pre-emptive lawsuit seeking a ruling that the controversial measure is constitutional. The law bans “sanctuary cities,” the common term for local governments that do not enforce federal immigration laws. The law also allows local law enforcement officers to question the immigration status of people they detain or arrest. It will take effect Sept. 1 unless a judge in a separate case in San Antonio rules differently.
Gov. Greg Abbott signed the law in May after designating it an emergency measure needed to ensure Texans were safe from undocumented immigrants that commit crimes. Opponents of the law, including the cities of Houston, Austin, San Antonio and El Cenizo, says it violates several provisions of the U.S. Constitution. Though yesterday’s ruling by Judge Sam Sparks is a victory for the law’s opponents, they must now wait and see what U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia decides in the other case.