Legislative History of the Arizona Immigration Law

May 6, 2010

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As you might imagine, we’ve handled several questions recently relating to the newly-enacted Arizona Immigration Legislation. A number of these involve obtaining the legislative history of the law. As mentioned in a previous post, one can obtain a list of legislative history on Westlaw by finding AZ LEGIS 113 (2010) by citation, then clicking the “Reports” link to the left of the document. Upon performing that action, however, one is confronted by a long list of documents, including news releases, fact sheets, amendments, etc.

How does one easily navigate this list to find relevant information, without having to read each of the 20+ documents in full? A search in the Arizona Legislative History database, that’s how!

Let’s say, for example, that you are asked to find legislative history relevant to the “willful failure to complete or carry an alien registration document” piece of the legislation. We know that the legislation originated as Arizona Senate Bill 1070, and we know that we want the document to mention the willful failure to complete or carry an alien registration document. Thus, we access the Arizona Legislative History (AZ-LH) database, and run the following Terms & Connectors search: “SENATE BILL” S.B. /3 1070 & “WILLFUL FAILURE.” The search returns 8 documents, and each mentions the terms we were looking for.