With or without immigration reform at the national level, states and localities will continue to play a
significant role in regulating the lives of immigrant residents.
Congress and the Supreme Court have also granted limited room for states to regulate the lives and livelihoods of immigrants residing within their borders, such as issuing business licenses and providing health and welfare services.
whatever the configuration of state and municipal immigrant-attraction strategies, they are not a substitute for federal legislative action. It is federal, not state or local, policy that controls the laws that allow immigrants to enter the country to live and work. As long as immigration reform remains stuck in Congress, states and cities will continue to generate new policies, for better or for worse.
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