Grijalva thanks Obama, Justice Department for filing suit

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TUCSON, Ariz. -- Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva today thanked President Obama for seeking an injunction to block the recently passed Arizona law commonly referred to as SB 1070. The law, which is opposed by many Arizona law enforcement officials, mandates that local police check immigration paperwork for anyone detained or involved in a police stop if there is a "reasonable suspicion" that person is an undocumented immigrant.

The law has been condemned by Grijalva and other federal lawmakers as a serious overreach and a threat to civil rights, especially given concerns about past enforcement practices in Arizona. Grijalva thanked Obama for "seeing clearly that this is not the way to handle immigration reform or border issues."

"Even the most ardent supporters of SB 1070 should support this crucial test of its legality," he said. "All elected officials have sworn to uphold the Constitution, and a test of SB 1070's constitutionality is not a left-right issue."

Grijalva especially applauded the administration and the president for their focus on immigration as the issue continues to receive public scrutiny. "This is exactly the right time for our federal government to send a message about the importance of fairness and equality under the law," he said. "I join many others in thanking the president for his outreach and his leadership, and I look forward to working with him to ensure that justice is done for the people of Arizona and the country."

The Department of Justice announced earlier today that it has filed suit in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Phoenix.