NEW ORLEANS — A federal appeals court has partially lifted a judge's order that blocked much of a Texas law targeting "sanctuary cities."
Monday's ruling by three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel allows more of the law to take effect, and says that the law could survive with some language changes.
The law requires Texas cities and counties to comply with federal immigration officials' requests to detain people who are suspected of being in the country illegally and jailed on non-immigration offenses.
“We are pleased today’s 5th Circuit ruling will allow Texas to strengthen public safety by implementing the key components of Senate Bill 4,” Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement. “Enforcing immigration law helps prevent dangerous criminals from being released into Texas communities. I am confident Senate Bill 4 will be found constitutional and ultimately upheld.”
State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez, D-Austin, came out against the ruling and said that "Texans cannot wait nor afford another round of years-long litigation while this law tears families apart and sows distrust of and confusion among our law enforcement agencies."
U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia blocked much of the law on Aug. 31, a day before it was to take effect. The state asked the New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to let the law take effect ahead of oral arguments set for November.