May 19, 2010; Source: | The National Immigration Law Center and a group of like-minded nonprofits have filed a lawsuit challenging Arizona’s harsh new immigration law requiring local police to demand papers from people they suspect are unauthorized to be in this country. The coalition says the new law “invites racial profiling”, violates the First Amendment and contradicts federal law.

The announcement of the lawsuit comes days after President Obama, together with Mexican President Filipe Caldoron, denounced the new law, calling it “a misdirected expression of frustration over our broken immigration system.” Obama pressed Congress to act to create legislation that would strengthen enforcement of current laws and create a path for undocumented people living in the U.S. to become citizens.

Hours before President Obama’s appearance with Caldoron, First Lady, Michelle Obama encountered a Maryland school girl who brought abstract immigration policy closer to home. The girl asked the First Lady if the President was “taking everybody away” who didn’t have papers. She told the First Lady, “But my mom doesn’t have any papers.”—Aaron Lester