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In-state tuition for illegal immigrants is preserved with California Supreme Court ruling [Updated]

Chin The California Supreme Court decided unanimously Monday that illegal immigrants may continue to be eligible for in-state tuition rates at the state's colleges and universities rather than pay the higher rates charged to those who live out of state.

In a ruling written by Justice Ming W. Chin, one of the panel's more conservative members, the state high court said a California law that guarantees the lower tuition for students who attend California high schools for at least three years and graduate does not conflict with a federal prohibition on giving illegal immigrants educational benefits based on residency.

California is one of several states that permit illegal immigrants to take advantage of lower college tuition for students who attend high school and graduate in state. About 25,000 illegal immigrants are estimated to receive in-state tuition rates in California.

A group fighting illegal immigration challenged the California law on behalf of U.S. citizens who pay the higher tuition as out-of-state students. The group won in lower court, and the state appealed.

The lawsuit contended the California law usurped a federal prohibition on giving educational benefits based on residency to illegal immigrants but not all U.S. citizens.

College students who are in the country illegally are barred from government financial-aid programs. The U.S. Supreme Court is expected eventually to decide whether the lower tuition rates also violate federal law.

[Updated at 10:29: The court observed that the state law also benefits U.S. citizens who reside in other states but attend and graduate from high school in California.

"It cannot be the case that states may never give a benefit to unlawful aliens without giving the same benefit to all American citizens," Chin wrote.]


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--Maura Dolan in San Francisco

Photo: California Supreme Court Judge Ming W. Chin in 1996. (Bob Galbraith / Associated Press)


Comments () | Archives (803)

In-Justice Ming W. Chin should explain why tax paying legal citizens must pay for benefits for illegal aliens instead of giving empty toothless FALSE statements.
Example : "..states may never give a benefit to unlawful aliens without giving the same benefit to all American citizens." Get out of your ivory tower and see the world as it really is. Legal citizens are paying for services they are NOT receiving! Is this NOT CLEAR????

Wow. Way to go CA. Good job. That is great. Way to be. The rest of the country should aspire to your infinite wisdom. Stellar move. That is great. Keep up the good work.

You California people get what you deserve for voting nutjobs in who appoint judges that are either Socialist or Communist.

I do not feel sorry for you at all. Make sure you stay in California and do not spread this cancer to the rest of the coutry.

I suspect that even the most "conservative" member the the California Supreme Court is far left of center.

Get a grip. The court isn't saying tuition is free, only the "residents" can pay the lower rate. They are residents so the court doesn't have a choice in the matter.

The issue is the federal government's refusal to enforce immigration laws. They knowingly ignore these laws and allow millions of people to enter this country illegally.

Either enforce the law or change the law. The discussion and lawsuits around this topic scream for clarification.

No wonder California is cripple financially. This isn't even the children of illegal immigrants. This is ILLEGAL immigrants themselves. If they're known to be illegal, then they should be deported. This alone would save Californians BILLIONS of dollars EVERY year.

Every single California taxpayer is paying for the education of Mexicans. There's no mystery to the debt problems of California.

Makes me so proud to live here.

**rolls eyes**

So I, as a citizen of this country, had to pay full out of state tuition for my grad degree at a UC university, but the illegals, who are committing a crime being in the US, get the reduced rate?

This logic is why we, as a country, are failing our own citizens.

What about u.s. citizens? or documented immigrants? What more can be done to aggravate the American public?? I'm disgusted with it all.

just so I am clear on this......
someone who has entered this country illegally is entitled to a better rate of tuition than a US citizen from another state?
sure, that's fair.

Maybe we should fence off Cali and give it to mexico...then they would be happy...gives mexico a piece of America, and Americans get rid of the "stupid" people in Cali...sounds like a good trade to me. Cause we all know that Cali is the "a*s kissing state to Obummer".

The real S... is that so many of these illegals are not only getting a preferred rate of tuition, but they are getting financial aid!! It is so wrong on so many levels.

Only in California, the bathos left can implement a ruling like this.You truly are the progressive potheads, and drug induced leaders, of that now broke and laughing stock of the nation Caleeefooorrrinnneee.
What a pathetic excuse of a state you are.....

I think there was a time when the citizens would march on the court with pitchforks and torches, tar and feathers, for judges like this.

"Our" government cares more about illegal aliens and Israel than it does America. This government is either going to have to be taken over and reformed, or completely destroyed. The US government is now the number one threat to our existence.

They waited until after the election to do this; I will never vote to reappoint another judge ever again. It's going to be no down the line from now on.

In case you are posting something about this being a result of liberals, read the article again.

"In a ruling written by Justice Ming W. Chin, one of the panel's more conservative members..."

That's right. Conservatives let everyone in to appease big business, now they are letting them stay.

Thats lovely... someone born in the US but lives in another state, whos parents pay their taxes has to pay a higher tuition but illegals dont. The sad part is the liberal progressives continue their downward slide into bankruptcy and oblivious to whats going on. I lived in the Bay area for 10 years and havent looked back once after leaving

The real insult here is that not only are these people getting preferential tuition rates, they are all on financial aid! Middle class families can't qualify due to their income, but let's just give it away to the illegals.

Unfortunately, I still live in the broke, third-world toilet knows as California. However, despite having family here, my wife and I are seriously discussing leaving ASAP.

And you wonder why California is broke....... all the illegals are sucking California dry.....Don't you dare come to the other 49 states to bail your a$$es out.....we don't want to give you a dime. You made your bed, now lay in it!! It is not the rest 0f the country's responsibility to bail you out of your irresponsibility. If Jerry Brown, doesn't take this illegal alien situation by the horns, California will be lost to Mexico. Illegal Mexicans are already taking possession of American land on border states, and Immigration is doing nothing to get them off our property. They continue to let them assume ownership of American land.

Wrong as wrong gets. Clearly the inmates are running this asylum. I only hope the plaintiffs appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The lunatics are running the asylum

Time to get rid of those justices who haven't the foggiest idea what the citizens of the USA and California want.

Civildisobedience if necessary.

Sweet. Americans are voting away their money to fund the world the same way they've squandered their Republic. You get what you pay for California. You're a state so far in the hole you can't see the light of day and now judges are telling you that your money has to go fund illegals' educations. They've totally figured out how to wring out your wallets.

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