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Court can find law unconstitutional but can't 'repeal'

Johns Hopkins University

The recent headline reporting the Supreme Court's decision involving Arizona, "High court repeals most of Ariz. Immigration law" (July 26) is factually incorrect. No court can "repeal" a law.

A court can interpret a law, hold it unconstitutional and therefore void (judicial review), or issue an injunction to temporarily or permanently block its enforcement (for a variety of reasons). Only a legislature can "repeal" a law that it passed. Only the Arizona legislature (or perhaps its voters by referendum) can "repeal" SB1270!

Joel B. Grossman, Baltimore

The writer is a professor in the political science department of Johns Hopkins University.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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