COLUMBIA, S.C. – The federal government filed a lawsuit Monday seeking to stop implementation of South Carolina's tough new immigration law, arguing that the legislation that requires law officers to check suspects' immigration status is unconstitutional.
Federal officials and state officials had met to discuss the issue a week ago.
The government wants a judge to stop enforcement of the legislation, which requires that officers call federal immigration officials if they suspect someone is in the country illegally following a stop for something else, U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles told The Associated Press.
"The Department of Justice has many important tasks," Nettles said. "Two of those important tasks are the defense of the constitution and ensuring equality is afforded to all."
The lawsuit filed in federal court names Gov. Nikki Haley as a defendant.