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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS/AP) — Opponents of Arizona’s immigration law praised a judge’s decision delaying key parts of the law, saying that victory underscores the need for comprehensive reform.
The demonstrations in San Francisco and Oakland Thursday were among dozens staged around the nation even as Arizona prepared an appeal to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.
Gov. Jan Brewer called U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton’s Wednesday’s decision halting the law, parts of which have already taken effect, “a bump in the road.”
The nearly 100 protesters in San Francisco called on California Attorney General Jerry Brown to allow the city to opt out of a new Immigration and Customs Enforcement program requiring all finger prints of any booked in the county jail be turned over to federal immigration officials.
One provision of SB1070 not delayed by Judge Bolton bars cities in that state from disregarding federal immigration laws.
Arizona is the nation’s epicenter of illegal immigration, with more than 400,000 undocumented residents. The state’s border with Mexico is awash with smugglers and drugs that funnel narcotics and immigrants throughout the U.S., and supporters of the new law say the influx of illegal migrants drains vast sums of money from hospitals, education and other services.
At least eight protesters were arrested in Phoenix, where hundreds of demonstrators marched from the federal court house where Judge Bolton issued her decision to the office of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who has made a crackdown on illegal immigration one of his signature issues.