One bill prevents foreign-born residents from using their home country’s IDs as legal identification. And another requires all businesses to check the legal status of new employees using a federal system called E-Verify.
The proposed measures would bring North Carolina in line with Arizona and Alabama, considered the states with the strongest immigration laws.
Each of the N.C. bills have passed at least one house. If approved, they’d be sent to the governor’s desk for her signature.
Check the status of each bill:
House Bill 33 – Consular Documents Not Acceptable as ID
H36 – Employers/Gov. Contractors Must Use E-Verify
HB744 Safe Students Act
Senate Bill 205 – No Benefits For Illegal Aliens
S303 – Real ID Compliance/ Limited Duration Licenses
The apparent progress of the N.C. bills reflects similar efforts sweeping across the nation as some states seek to take more active roles in enforcing immigration restrictions. But immigration advocates, as well as President Obama, say the issue should be handled at the federal level.
On Thursday, Alabama legislators appeared to take the title of toughest immigration enforcers from Arizona when the governor signed a new law, that among other things, makes it a crime to give an illegal immigrant a ride.
Most of the new immigration laws, whether those proposed in Alabama, North Carolina, or Georgia, are modeled after laws passed in Arizona last year.
More states could follow suit depending on the outcome of a Supreme Court decision on the most controversial aspects of the Arizona bill. The country’s highest court is expected to look closer at the Arizona law after a federal judge ruled some parts unconstitutional, including requiring police to check the immigration status of people detained if there is reason to believe he or she is in the country illegally.
Last month, the Supreme Court voted 5-3 to back another Arizona law that requires companies to check employee status that is similar to the E-Verify bill proposed in North Carolina.
File photo: Demonstrators supporting and opposing Arizona's Immigration policy (Annie Tritt/The New York Times)