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    This page contains Supreme Court rulings -- with summaries of the majority and minority conclusions.

01-ST-CYR on Apr 24, 2001

Decided Jun 25, 2001
Case Ruling: INS v. St. Cyr
The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) began deportation of Enrico St. Cyr after he pleaded guilty to a controlled substance violation. St. Cyr, a lawful permanent resident for ten years and a citizen of Haiti, became deportable by being convicted of the controlled substance violation. Before the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (AEDPA) and the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRIRA), the Attorney General could waive deportation of resident aliens. The AEDPA and IIRIRA, however, limited the class of aliens who can apply for relief.

HELD: By Stevens, joined by Kennedy, Souter, Ginsburg, Breyer

Justices decide, 5-4, against automatic deportation of those convicted of crimes before new stringent legal provisions took effect in 1996. Congress did not intend to strip the federal district courts of their authority to hear petitions from deportable aliens and that the AEDPA and IIRIRA did not deny relief to aliens who would have been eligible for such relief at the time of their convictions.

DISSENT #1: By Scalia, joined by Rehnquist, Thomas, and joined in part by O'Connor

Scalia, in dissent, argued that the plain language of the AEDPA and IIRIRA stripped the federal district courts of jurisdiction to entertain habeas corpus petitions. Scalia also argued that the majority was forcing Congress to use "magic words" to overcome the presumption of habeas corpus relief.

DISSENT #2: By O'Connor

The law guarantees some minimum extent of habeas review, but the right asserted by the alien in this case falls outside the scope of that review.


    Participating counts on VoteMatch question 12. Question 12: Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens Scores: -2=Strongly oppose; -1=Oppose; 0=neutral; 1=Support; 2=Strongly support.
  • Topic: Immigration
  • Headline: No automatic deportation for aliens convicted of crimes (Score: 2)
  • Headline 2: Automatic deportation for aliens convicted of crimes (Score: -2)
  • Headline 3: Automatic deportation for aliens convicted of some crimes (Score: -1)

    Participating counts on AmericansElect question 4.
  • Headline: No automatic deportation for aliens convicted of crimes (Answer: A)
  • Headline 2: Automatic deportation for aliens convicted of crimes (Answer: D)
  • Headline 3: Automatic deportation for aliens convicted of some crimes (Answer: C)
  • AmericansElect Quiz Question 4 on Immigration: When you think about illegal immigration, which of the following solutions come closest to your opinion?
    • A: All illegal immigrants should be able to stay in the US legally
    • B: Most illegal immigrants should be able to stay in the US, with some exceptions
    • C: Most illegal immigrants should be deported, with some exceptions
    • D: All illegal immigrants should be deported
    • E: Unsure


  • Key for participation codes:
  • Sponsorships: p=sponsored; o=co-sponsored; s=signed
  • Memberships: c=chair; m=member; e=endorsed; f=profiled; s=scored
  • Resolutions: i=introduced; w=wrote; a=adopted
  • Cases: w=wrote; j=joined; d=dissented; c=concurred
  • Surveys: '+' supports; '-' opposes.



Democrats participating in 01-ST-CYR

Stephen Breyer j1US Democratic Appointee to Supreme Court 
Ruth Bader Ginsburg j1US Democratic Appointee to Supreme Court 



Republicans participating in 01-ST-CYR

Anthony Kennedy j1US Republican Appointee to Supreme Court 
Sandra Day O`Connor w3dUS Republican Appointee to Supreme Court (retired 2005) 
William Rehnquist j2dUS Republican Appointee to Supreme Court (until 2005) 
Antonin Scalia w2dUS Republican Appointee to Supreme Court 
David Souter j1US Republican Appointee to Supreme Court (retired 2009) 
John Paul Stevens w1US Republican Appointee to Supreme Court (retired 2010) 
Clarence Thomas j2dUS Republican Appointee to Supreme Court 



Independents participating in 01-ST-CYR



Total recorded by OnTheIssues:

Democrats: 2
Republicans: 7
Independents: 0


















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