Arizona lawmakers have approved legislation that would criminalize the presence of illegal aliens and seeks to cut off job opportunities that attract illegal border crossers.
"The House and Senate may not get anything done. So we have an obligation to respond, since this is not just a national border [that's being compromised], it's the Arizona border," said state Rep. Russell Pearce, lead sponsor of the bill that passed the Legislature Thursday.
The bill, which calls for revoking business licenses for repeatedly hiring known illegal aliens and bars illegals from some state services including child care and adult education, has passed both chambers of the Republican-controlled Legislature, but is expected to be vetoed by Gov. Janet Napolitano, a Democrat,
Mrs. Napolitano earlier vetoed a bill that would have expanded the state's trespassing statutes to allow the arrest of illegal aliens who wind up there. She has vowed to veto any further measures that would have this same effect.
I think Arizonans saw what happened to California due to large scale Hispanic immigration (not a few of them are Cal expats who fled the decay) and do not want to see the process repeat in Arizona.
One key distinction is that the new version could be enforced only when police first approach a person about another offense, such as a traffic violation.
A first offense would be a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail. Subsequent offenses would be a felony carrying a sentence of at least three years in prison.
Political activists in Arizona want to sidestep Governor Napolitano's veto by putting an initiative on the ballot that would accomplish many of the same goals as the legislation that Napolitano will probably veto.
A citizens group is seeking the end of a policy that prevents Phoenix police officers from detaining suspected illegal aliens, questioning a person under arrest about immigration status or notifying federal authorities that an illegal alien is in custody.
Members of Protect Our City have started a petition drive to change the city's charter to require that police officers, along with all other city agencies and employees, assist federal authorities in enforcing U.S. immigration law.
Randy Pullen, a Republican National Committeeman from Arizona and the project's leader, told The Washington Times that he hopes to gather enough signatures to qualify the measure as an initiative on the city's November ballot.
Several Republican consultants say putting an immigration proposal on this year's ballot could pay political dividends as the party looks to unseat the Democratic governor and fend off challenges in U.S. Senate and congressional races.
By moving the immigration issue onto the ballot, Republicans are hoping to drive more voters to the polls. Republicans hold an edge of 6 percentage points over Democrats in voter registration.
"At that point it's just pure mathematics," said Doug Cole, a political consultant who works mostly with Republican candidates.
The national Republican Party, under control of El Presidente Jorge W. Bush, is totally blowing an opportunity to win elections by making immigration restriction a major Republican cause. The House Republicans should reject a compromise with the Imperial Senate on immigration and instead run for reelection as immigration restrictionsts.
Update: Maricopa County Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio has orderd his department to arrest all illegal aliens they encounter.
Since March, Arpaio, a Republican who refers to himself as "America's toughest sheriff," has directed the 3,000 men and women in the nation's third-largest sheriff's department to arrest undocumented workers. As of Thursday, his deputies and a posse of several hundred volunteers had captured 170 -- in a region where an estimated one in 10 workers is illegal. "My message to the illegals is this: Stay out of Maricopa County, because I'm the sheriff here," Arpaio said in an interview in his office on the 19th floor of a building in downtown Phoenix.
Notice the liberal Washington Post's use of the Orwellian "undocumented worker" instead of "illegal alien".
Many state and local governments are starting to enforce immigration laws.
In April, Gov. Sonny Perdue (R) signed a tough immigration bill that made Georgia the first state to require municipalities to require immigration enforcement training for their police. Police must check the immigration status of anyone arrested for a felony or drunken driving. The law also fines employers who hire illegal immigrants. Fourteen other states, including Virginia, are working on laws like Georgia's that would require local police training.
While our leaders are trying to dissolve the Republic and turn it into an Imperial government most people still want to save the old Republic. It is not yet clear to me which side will win.
|Share |||By Randall Parker at 2006 May 28 12:48 PM Immigration Law Enforcement|