Iowa immigration law

The Biden administration filed a lawsuit against Iowa’s law authorizing the arrest of deported individuals, arguing it interferes with federal immigration enforcement. The ACLU also filed a similar lawsuit. Iowa’s law, similar to Texas’, criminalizes reentry and clashes with federal deportation procedures.

Civil rights groups argue it affects even those with legal status. Governor Kim Reynolds defends the law, citing concerns over Biden’s immigration policies. Similar laws are being considered in other states, amid tensions between state and federal immigration enforcement.

Iowa’s legislation criminalizes “illegal reentry” into the state, carrying a penalty of up to two years imprisonment, and allows state judges to mandate deportation after serving sentences.

Iowa immigration law

The lawsuits contend that S.F. 2340 contradicts the federal deportation system and lacks exemptions for individuals with legal status, such as asylum seekers and survivors of domestic violence.

“There are lots of good reasons — related to foreign relations, national security, humanitarian interests, and our constitutional system — why the federal government enforces our immigration law, instead of all 50 states going out and doing their own thing,” said Rita Bettis Austen, legal director of the ACLU’s Iowa chapter.

The complaint filed Thursday alleges that the new statute steps on the federal government’s authority to enforce immigration law. The case is similar to a more expansive Texas law that has been challenged by both the Justice Department and civil rights groups.

Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird said Friday that the state would not back down.

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ByAsir F