Arizona must offer driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants

scotusWASHINGTON: The Supreme Court decided Wednesday that Arizona must offer driver’s licenses to young immigrants who entered the country illegally as children but were later shielded from deportation by President Barack Obama.

In a 6-3 decision, the justices turned down an emergency appeal from outgoing Gov. Jan Brewer, who argued that the state had the right to decide who gets a driver’s license.

The court let stand an order from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which said that Arizona may not deny driver’s licenses to the young immigrants, who have been authorized to stay in the U.S. and work under Obama’s deferred-deportation program.

Though the justices did not explain their decision, the conservative-leaning high court has maintained the view that matters of immigration are entrusted to the federal government, not the states.

The court’s action is the latest setback for Arizona in its continuing fight with the Obama administration over immigration. Two years ago the high court blocked most of a disputed Arizona law that authorized its police to question and arrest people who did not have proof of their citizenship.

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