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Justice Dept. Sets Sights On Alabama's Immigration Law Again

One week after a federal judge refused to block key sections of Alabama's new immigration law, the U.S. Department of Justice is asking a federal appeals court to halt the state's law, saying that it goes against federal powers over immigration.

Seen as the nation's toughest restriction on illegal immigration, the law requires public schools to confirm students' legal residency, and makes it illegal to transport or rent property to undocumented immigrants, as NPR reported in June.

Writing in The Huntsville Times, Brian Lawson quotes several passages from the 28-page Justice filing, which argues that Alabama's law is "inducing many parents to keep their children home from school due to fear about the State's immigration policy."

In its court filing, the Justice Department states that "neither the Constitution nor the federal immigration laws permit a state scheme avowedly designed to drive aliens out of the State — a program of de facto removal and a blunt instrument" that is likely to disrupt the immigration policies of both the U.S. government and Alabama's neighboring states.

For NPR's Newscast unit, Kath Lohr reports that "the Justice Department says the state's attempt to drive off illegal immigrants invites discrimination, and that it could negatively affect diplomatic relations with foreign countries. But Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley says he expected the challenge, and is determined to uphold the law."

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Anne Tyler: "A Spool Of Blue Thread" (Rebroadcast)

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Thanksgiving Buzz: What Would Pilgrims Say About The Plight Of Bees?

When you sit down for your holiday dinner, you may want to give thanks to bees and other pollinators. Their health is tied to your food. What's behind the bee declines? Watch our video investigation.

Capitol Hill Lawmakers Find Living At The Office Makes Sense, Saves Cents

Three office buildings on the House side of the U.S. Capitol serve as offices, and by night as lawmakers' apartments. Dozens of lawmakers choose to sleep in the office when Congress is in session.

From Takeout To Breakups: Apps Can Deliver Anything, For A Price

Convenience is at an all-time premium — and a lot of smartphone apps promise to make many of the things we do every day easier. In a time-crunch or sheer laziness, how far will the apps take us?

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