Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2013


In March 2007, the New York Times published an editorial contrasting the approaches of three Connecticut cities—Stamford, New Haven, and Danbury—to the issue of undocumented immigration.[1] Entitled “Immigration: A Tale of Three Cities,” the article began by observing that “Connecticut does not speak with one voice on immigration. … Cities send their own messages, some welcoming, some divisive.”[2] Yet expressive measures addressing undocumented immigration are not confined to the local level; Connecticut’s state legislature has in recent years “spoken” multiple times on the issue by passing legislation favorable to the state’s undocumented population. My examination of subfederal regulation of immigration in Connecticut provides a counterpoint to oft-articulated arguments against state and local immigration measures. While such arguments tend to focus on restrictive measures, recent developments in Connecticut highlight the potential for furthering immigrants’ rights through subfederal regulation.

[1] Editorial, Immigration: A Tale of Three Cities, N.Y. Times, Mar. 4, 2007, [hereinafter Three Cities].

[2] Id.