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.
This law, which should not be confused with the California DREAM Act that Jerry Brown pledged to sign, is a popular and fair provision that ensures all of California’s students get the chance to succeed in college and therefore in life, instead of enforcing segregation and unequal opportunities based on immigration status.
It’s also notable that Ming Chin, one of the court’s most right-wing members, authored the decision, rejecting the claim by immigrant bashers that the state is preempted from doing this by federal law.
Meg Whitman crashed and burned when she tried to make anti-immigrant hostility a part of her campaign for governor. Californians have spoken loud and clear – they want undocumented immigrants to become a fully equal part of California society. Good to see that the California Supreme Court stood up for equal rights for a change.