California Court Rules Against Tuition Break For Illegals


Finally, a court has injected some sense into the argument about educating illegal aliens.

An appeals court in the state of California ruled earlier this week that a California law intended to permit illegal aliens to attend public colleges and universities at in-state tuition rates is gavelunconstitutional because it conflicts with federal law, and violates both the equal protection clause and privileges and immunity clause of the constitution.

Citing the 1996 Immigration Act which states that “an alien who is not lawfully present in the United States shall not be eligible on the basis of residence within a State…for any post-secondary education benefit unless a citizen or national of the United States is eligible for such a benefit…,” the three judge panel unanimously ruled that illegal aliens may not attend California colleges and universities at a subsidized rate, noting that this benefit isn’t extended to legal American citizens living in other states.

“We believe that Monday’s ruling by the California Court of Appeals is unambiguous and precedent setting,” stated Michael Hethmon, general counsel for Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI). “In their ruling, the judges indicated that federal law preempts not only California’s in-state tuition law, but all such laws across the country.” Currently, nine other states offer in-state tuition benefits to illegal aliens.”

Besides California, many other states have been taking up the issue of providing educational assistance for illegal aliens in addition to other public welfare programs. Kris Kobach, senior counsel to the ILRI said, “The decision also makes it clear that federal law preempts many benefits that are being dispensed to illegal aliens that are expressly prohibited under the Welfare Reform Act. In the court’s opinion, citizens have the right to go to court and sue to prevent illegal aliens from benefiting from a whole range of government programs.”

The Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) is a public interest law organization working exclusively to protect the legal rights, privileges, and property of U.S. citizens and their communities from injuries and damages caused by unlawful immigration.


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