De Vries v. Regents of the University of California
IRLI filed an amicus curiae brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of a California taxpayer who filed an action against the state governing board of the University of California system for providing tuition, financial aid, and student loan benefits to unlawfully present aliens attending that university.
In the case of De Vries v. Regents of the University of California, taxpayer Earl De Vries appeals to the Supreme Court from a December decision by a California Court of Appeal that ruled the Regents did not violate a federal law that requires states that want to give benefits to such aliens to do so in a law passed after 1996 "affirmatively" granting them benefits. This provision is an exception to another federal provision that declares that, generally, unlawfully present aliens are not eligible for state and local benefits.
In its brief, IRLI urged the Supreme Court to grant review in order to find the exception to the general rule unconstitutional. IRLI argued that how states organize their governments is an inviolate feature of their sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution. Accordingly, IRLI urged the Court to find the provision requiring such reorganization unconstitutional, sever it from the larger statute, and rule for De Vries by applying the general bar to giving benefits to unlawfully present aliens.