Case: Arizona Contractors Ass'n v. Candelaria

2:07-cv-02496 | U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona

Filed Date: 2007

Clearinghouse coding in progress

Case Summary

This case is the reincarnation of a previously filed suit challenging the constitutionality of the Legal Arizona Workers Act (the "Act") styled Arizona Contractors Assoc., Inc. v. Napolitano. [IM-AZ-4]. The District Court (Judge Wake) dismissed that suit on December 7, 2007 for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, finding that there was no justiciable case or controversy against the Governor or Attorney General, as they did not have the power to enforce the challenged Act. The Court noted tha…

This case is the reincarnation of a previously filed suit challenging the constitutionality of the Legal Arizona Workers Act (the "Act") styled Arizona Contractors Assoc., Inc. v. Napolitano. [IM-AZ-4]. The District Court (Judge Wake) dismissed that suit on December 7, 2007 for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, finding that there was no justiciable case or controversy against the Governor or Attorney General, as they did not have the power to enforce the challenged Act. The Court noted that only county attorneys had that power.

Immediately after the dismissal, on December 9, 2007, a coalition of trade organizations and Arizona employers filed a lawsuit under 28 U.S.C. §§ 2201 and 2201 in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona, Phoenix division. The plaintiffs, represented by private counsel at this stage, asked the court for injunctive and declaratory relief and attorney's fees, challenging the constitutionality of the Act which requires Arizona employers to verify the employment eligibility of each employee through a federal verification program and established sanctions against Arizona employers that employed aliens who were not authorized to work. The Act provides the Superior Court of the State of Arizona with the power to suspend or revoke the business licenses of employers who intentionally or knowingly employ illegal aliens. Specifically, the plaintiffs claimed that the Act was pre-empted by federal immigration law.

A companion case was also refiled on December 12, 2007 by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the National Immigration Law Center, the ACLU Foundation Immigrants Rights Project and the Arizona ACLU. That case was styled Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc. v. Goddard, 2:07-cv-02518-SMM. [IM-AZ-0011].

The District Court (Judge Neil V. Wake) consolidated the cases on December 14, 2007.

Plaintiffs in the consolidated action alleged, as they had in the previously filed cases, that the Act violated the Supremacy Clause of the U. S. Constitution as it was preempted by federal immigration law and the federal government's exclusive authority to regulate immigration. Plaintiffs also asserted that the Act violated the due process rights of employers and workers. The Arizona Contractor plaintiffs also asserted violations of the Commerce Clause, the Fourth Amendment and the Arizona state constitution. Prior to consolidation, plaintiffs had requested a preliminary injunction in each case. Defendants moved to dismiss the cases.

On February 7, 2008 Judge Wake found that federal immigration law did not preempt the Act, and it did not violate the Due Process Clause or the Commerce Clause. Specifically, Judge Wake found that Section 1324a(h)(2) of the federal Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) expressly authorized the Act at issue in this case. The relevant section of the federal statute reads "the provisions of this section preempt any State or local law imposing civil or criminal sanctions (other than through licensing and similar laws) upon those who employ, or recruit or refer for a fee for employment, unauthorized aliens." Judge Wake found that the Act was a licensing or similar law and thus fell within the federal statute's savings clause. Furthermore, Judge Wake held that the Act's requirement of mandatory use of the federal E-Verify program did not conflict with federal objects or purposes, even though Congress had decided to make the program optional.

On appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, the plaintiffs renewed their argument that federal law expressly preempted the Act. Moreover, the Act's mandatory requirement to use E-Verify, the plaintiffs contended, was impliedly preempted by federal law because it conflicts with the policies envisioned in the voluntary nature of the program under federal law. On September 17, 2008 the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit affirmed the District Court's finding. In doing so, the Court of Appeals held that federal immigration law did not preempt the Act. The court explained that the Act was not expressly preempted because it fell within ICRA's savings clause allowing for state licensing and similar laws to regulate the employment of unauthorized aliens. Moreover, the court found that federal law does not impliedly preempt the Act's provision mandating the use of E-Verify. The court found it telling that "Congress could have, but did not, expressly forbid state laws from requiring E-Verify participation."

On appeal to the United States Supreme Court, the Chamber of Commerce of the United States and the named petitioners of the consolidated cases that made it to the Supreme Court, argued that the Court of Appeals had misinterpreted ICRA's savings clause and consequently had incorrectly ruled that the Act was not preempted. Furthermore, the petitioners argued that even if the Act was not expressly preempted by ICRA, federal law impliedly preempted it because it conflicted with the structure and function of federal law. The respondents replied in their brief that the Court of Appeals had been correct when it held that federal law did not preempt the Act.

On May 26, 2011 the United States Supreme Court, in an opinion delivered by Chief Justice Roberts, affirmed the Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit's judgment. In doing so, the Court held that the Act fell within ICRA's savings clause and was thus not expressly preempted by federal law. Specifically the Court found that "The Arizona law, on its face, purports to impose sanctions through licensing laws[,]" which placed it squarely within ICRA's savings clause that allowed for States to regulate the employment of unauthorized individuals through licensing and similar laws. The Court was particularly unmoved by the petitioners' argument that the Act was not a licensing law because it only dealt with the revocation of licenses rather than the granting of them. In fact, the Court flatly rejected argument. Moreover, the Court found that federal law did not impliedly preempt the Act because "Arizona's procedures simply implement the sanctions that Congress expressly allowed Arizona to pursue through licensing laws." Lastly, the Court found that the Act's requirement that employers use E-Verify was not impliedly preempted because it did not conflict with federal law.

Summary Authors

Elizabeth Daligga (6/25/2012)

Related Cases

Chamber of Commerce of the United States v. Whiting, District of Arizona (2007)

Arizona Contractors Assoc., Inc. v. Napolitano, District of Arizona (2007)

Valle Del Sol Inc. v. Goddard, District of Arizona (2007)

People


Judge(s)

Breyer, Stephen Gerald (District of Columbia)

Roberts, John Glover Jr. (District of Columbia)

Schroeder, Mary Murphy (Arizona)

Smith, Norman Randy (Idaho)

Sotomayor, Sonia (District of Columbia)

Wake, Neil Vincent (Arizona)

Walker, John Mercer Jr. (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Berzon, Stephen P. (California)

Blanchard, Charles (Arizona)

Brennan, Shane (District of Columbia)

Judge(s)

Breyer, Stephen Gerald (District of Columbia)

Roberts, John Glover Jr. (District of Columbia)

Schroeder, Mary Murphy (Arizona)

Smith, Norman Randy (Idaho)

Sotomayor, Sonia (District of Columbia)

Wake, Neil Vincent (Arizona)

Walker, John Mercer Jr. (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Berzon, Stephen P. (California)

Blanchard, Charles (Arizona)

Brennan, Shane (District of Columbia)

Campbell, Kristina Michelle (California)

Chang, Joannie C. (California)

Conrad, Robin S. (District of Columbia)

Eckstein, Paul F. (Arizona)

Guizar, Monica T. (California)

Guttentag, Lucas (California)

Jadwat, Omar C. (New York)

Joaquin, Linton (California)

Kawka, Shane B. (District of Columbia)

Krueger, Matthew D. (District of Columbia)

Mikkilineni, Tara (District of Columbia)

Moffa, Luis R. Jr. (New Jersey)

Newell, Jennifer Chang (California)

Nomkin, Joel W. (Arizona)

Nunn-Gilman, Heidi (Arizona)

Pace, Julie A. (Arizona)

Phillips, Carter G (District of Columbia)

Pochoda, Daniel Joseph (Arizona)

Rublin, Burt (Pennsylvania)

Selden, David A. (Arizona)

Shumsky, Eric A. (District of Columbia)

Smullin, Rebecca (California)

Sorenson, Quin M (District of Columbia)

Tumlin, Karen C. (California)

Valenzuela, Cynthia Ann (California)

Weissglass, Jonathan (California)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

GilBride, Eileen Dennis (Arizona)

Goddard, Terry (Arizona)

Hall, Roger W. (Arizona)

Jurkowitz, Daniel S. (Arizona)

Kerekes, William J. (Arizona)

Lessler, Michael Jay (Arizona)

Munns, Christopher Arthur (Arizona)

O'Grady, Mary Ruth (Arizona)

Payette, Lance B. (Arizona)

Roll, Chris Myrl (Arizona)

Staton, Georgia (Arizona)

Sweeney, Kathleen Patricia (Arizona)

Other Attorney(s)

Bagenstos, Samuel R. (District of Columbia)

Dmitrieva, Irina Y. (Illinois)

Gross, Mark L. (District of Columbia)

Harrison, Lindsay C (District of Columbia)

Jay, William M. (District of Columbia)

Katyal, Neal Kumar (District of Columbia)

Perez, Thomas E. (District of Columbia)

Pollock, Nathaniel S. (District of Columbia)

West, Tony (District of Columbia)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

2:07-cv-02518

Docket (PACER)

Valle Del Sol Inc. v. Goddard

Dec. 18, 2007

Dec. 18, 2007

Docket

2:07-cv-02496

Docket (PACER)

Dec. 19, 2007

Dec. 19, 2007

Docket

2:07-cv-02496

Complaint

Dec. 9, 2007

Dec. 9, 2007

Complaint

2:07-cv-02518

Complaint

Valle Del Sol Inc. v. Goddard

Dec. 12, 2007

Dec. 12, 2007

Complaint

2:07-cv-02496

2:07-cv-02518

Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, and Order

Feb. 7, 2008

Feb. 7, 2008

Order/Opinion

Opinion

Chicanos Por La Causa v. Napolitano

U. S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Sept. 17, 2008

Sept. 17, 2008

Order/Opinion

Brief for the United States as Amicus Curiae Supporting Petitioners

Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America v. Whiting

Arizona state supreme court

Sept. 1, 2010

Sept. 1, 2010

Pleading / Motion / Brief

Brief for the Petitioners

Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America v. Candelaria

Supreme Court of the United States

Sept. 1, 2010

Sept. 1, 2010

Pleading / Motion / Brief

Brief Amici Curiae of Representative Romano L. Mazzoli, Senator Arlen Specter, and Representative Howard L. Berman in Support of Petitioners

Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America v. Whiting

Supreme Court of the United States

Sept. 8, 2010

Sept. 8, 2010

Pleading / Motion / Brief

09-00115

Supreme Court Opinion

Chamber of Commerce v. Whiting

Supreme Court of the United States

May 26, 2011

May 26, 2011

Order/Opinion

Docket

ECF Number Description Date Link Date / Link
1

COMPLAINT. Filing fee received: $ 350.00, receipt number 09700000000001607221 (TRO Requested), filed by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America. (Attachments: # 1 Civil Cover Sheet, # 2 Summons Summons.Goddard, # 3 Summons Summons.Garriott, # 4 Summons Summons.Thomas, # 5 Exhibit Exhibit.A, # 6 Exhibit Exhibit.B, # 7 Exhibit Exhibit.C, # 8 Exhibit Exhibit.D)(Campbell, Kristina) (Entered: 12/12/2007)

Dec. 12, 2007

Dec. 12, 2007

2

MOTION to Reassign Case and Consolidate by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America. (Attachments: # 1 Order Reassigning Case) (Campbell, Kristina) (Entered: 12/12/2007)

Dec. 12, 2007

Dec. 12, 2007

3

MOTION for Temporary Restraining Order and Order to Show Cause re: Preliminary Injunction by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America. (Attachments: # 1 Memorandum of Points and Authorities in Support of Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction, # 2 Exhibit A, # 3 Exhibit B, # 4 Exhibit C, # 5 Exhibit D, # 6 Exhibit E, # 7 Exhibit F, # 8 Exhibit G, # 9 Exhibit H, # 10 Exhibit I, # 11 Exhibit J, # 12 Exhibit K, # 13 Exhibit L, # 14 Declaration of Tyler Moran, # 15 Declaration of Luz Sarmina, # 16 Declaration of Jonathan Weissglass, # 17 Weissglass Exhibit A, # 18 Weissglass Exhibit B, # 19 Weissglass Exhibit C)(Campbell, Kristina) (Entered: 12/12/2007)

Dec. 12, 2007

Dec. 12, 2007

This case has been assigned to the Honorable Stephen M. McNamee. All future pleadings or documents should bear the correct case number: CV 07-2518-PHX- SMM. (Entered by REK) (Entered: 12/13/2007)

Dec. 12, 2007

Dec. 12, 2007

4

Notice re Magistrate Consent Form (REK) (Entered: 12/13/2007)

Dec. 12, 2007

Dec. 12, 2007

5

Notice re Amended Summons by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America (Campbell, Kristina) (Entered: 12/13/2007)

Dec. 13, 2007

Dec. 13, 2007

6

Notice re Amended Summons by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America (Campbell, Kristina) (Entered: 12/13/2007)

Dec. 13, 2007

Dec. 13, 2007

7

Notice re Amended Summons by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America (Campbell, Kristina) (Entered: 12/13/2007)

Dec. 13, 2007

Dec. 13, 2007

8

Summons Issued as to Terry Goddard, Andrew Thomas, Gale Garriott. (Attachments: # 1 Thomas, # 2 Garriott)(REK). *** IMPORTANT: You must select "Document and stamps" or "Document and comments" on the print screen in order for the court seal to appear on the summons you print. (Entered: 12/13/2007)

Dec. 13, 2007

Dec. 13, 2007

9

ORDER that this case and the pending motions be referred to the Clerk of the Court for reassignment by random lot. That a copy of this Order be transmitted to the Honorable Neil. V. Wake. Please open attached pdf for full details. Signed by Judge Stephen M McNamee on 12/14/07. (Attachments: # 1 Reassignment Letter) (ESL) (Entered: 12/14/2007)

Dec. 14, 2007

Dec. 14, 2007

10

CONSOLIDATION ORDER - MEMBER CASE with Lead Case number CV 07-2496 PHX-NVW. Case reassigned to Judge Neil V Wake for all further proceedings. Judge Frederick J Martone terminated. Plaintiff's 2 Motion to Reassign and Consolidate is granted. Motion Hearing re 3 Motion for Temporary Restraining Order filed in CV 07-2496 PHX-NVW is set for 12/18/07 at 1:30. Signed by Judge Neil V Wake on 12/14/07. (Attachments: # 1 Letter)(LSP) (Entered: 12/14/2007)

Dec. 14, 2007

Dec. 14, 2007

11

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America. Gale Garriott served on 12/14/2007. (Campbell, Kristina) Modified on 12/18/2007 DOCUMENT FILED IN ERROR. ATTORNEY NOTICED TO REFILE DOCUMENT IN CORRECT CASE (ESL). (Entered: 12/17/2007)

Dec. 17, 2007

Dec. 17, 2007

12

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America. Terry Goddard served on 12/14/2007. (Campbell, Kristina) Modified on 12/18/2007 DOCUMENT FILED IN ERROR, ATTORNEY NOTICED TO REFILE DOCUMENT IN CORRECT CASE (ESL). (Entered: 12/17/2007)

Dec. 17, 2007

Dec. 17, 2007

13

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America. Andrew Thomas served on 12/14/2007. (Campbell, Kristina) Modified on 12/18/2007 DOCUMENT FILED IN ERROR, ATTORNEY NOTICED TO REFILE DOCUMENT IN CORRECT CASE (ESL). (Entered: 12/17/2007)

Dec. 17, 2007

Dec. 17, 2007

14

NOTICE TO FILER OF DEFICIENCY re 11 Summons Returned Executed - Complaint/Habeas Petition Only filed by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America, 13 Summons Returned Executed - Complaint/Habeas Petition Only filed by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America, 12 Summons Returned Executed - Complaint/Habeas Petition Only filed by Valle Del Sol Inc, Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., Somos America. Description of deficiency: Document entered in wrong case. FOLLOW UP REQUIRED. (ESL, ) (Entered: 12/18/2007)

Dec. 18, 2007

Dec. 18, 2007

Case Details

State / Territory: Arizona

Case Type(s):

Immigration and/or the Border

Key Dates

Filing Date: 2007

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Consortium of Arizona construction and business associations and immigration advocacy groups.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

ACLU Affiliates (any)

ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project

MALDEF

National Immigration Law Center

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Apache County Attorney (Apache), County

Cochise County Attorney (Cochise), County

Coconino County Attorney (Coconino), County

Gila County Attorney (Gila), County

Graham County Attorney (Graham), County

Greenlee County Attorney (Greenlee), County

LaPaz County Attorney (La Paz), County

Maricopa County Attorney (Maricopa), County

Mohave County Attorney (Mohave), County

Navajo County Attorney (Navajo), County

Pima County Attorney (Pima), County

Pinal County Attorney (Pinal), County

Santa Cruz County Attorney (Santa Cruz), County

Yavapai County Attorney (Yavapai), County

Yuma County Attorney (Yuma), County

Attorney General of the State of Arizona, State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Any published opinion

U.S. Supreme Court merits opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Issues

General:

Racial profiling

Discrimination-basis:

Language discrimination

National origin discrimination

Race discrimination

Immigration/Border:

Constitutional rights

Criminal prosecution

Employer sanctions

Employment

Undocumented immigrants - state and local regulation