Theodore's World: Rhode Island Democrat Wants Arizona-Like Law

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May 26, 2010

Rhode Island Democrat Wants Arizona-Like Law

Rhode Island Democrat Wants Arizona-Like Law

State Rep. Peter Palumbo pushing for immigration crackdown in his state

RI lawmaker files immigration bill that follows Arizona's law


State Rep. Peter Palumbo, D-District 16, Cranston, has filed a bill that largely copies a controversial Arizona law considered the toughest immigration legislation in the country.

Palumbo's bill, like the Arizona law, makes failure to carry alien registration cards a state crime, and requires police to question people "where reasonable suspicion exists" that the person is unlawfully in the United States.

The bill, H 8142, filed Tuesday, also targets people who hire illegal immigrants, or who knowingly transport them.

Much of Palumbo's bill is taken verbatim from the Arizona bill, SB 1070, which was signed into law by Governor Jan Brewer last month, over President Obama's objections.

Palumbo could not be reached for comment Wednesday morning.

Brewer's signing of the Arizona law set off protests around the country, and prompted the filing of a number of constitutional challenges and lawsuits, and attempts to boycott Arizona businesses.

The latest challenge, a federal class-action suit, was filed Monday by the American Civil Liberties Union and other civil rights organizations.

Steven Brown, executive director of the Rhode Island affiliate of the ACLU, called Palumbo's bill "nothing less than a deliberate recipe for increased racial profiling in the state. It purports to give police this magical bloodhound quality of being able to sniff out any individual who is in the country illegally. How a police officer otherwise is able to adopt this reasonable suspicion that somebody is here illegally is beyond me."

Brown added, "I don't think there's going to be a lot of support for this. I think Rhode Islanders on the whole are much more cognizant of the incredibly divisive and mean-spirited nature of a bill like this."

Terry Gorman, head of Rhode Islanders for Immigration Law Enforcement (RIILE), said he and his organization plan to support Palumbo's effort.
"It's incredibly important that we have laws like the Arizona law if we're ever going to do anything about illegal immigration," Gorman said. "The situation is never going to be resolved unless measures are taken."


Wild Thing's comment........

We can thank Jan Brewer, the people in the AZ House and Senate who voted for the law plus citizens of AZ for this. Arizona is merely endorsing federal law, it’s common sense that all states should do the same.

It is absolutely imperative that several other states do this, and quickly. It destroys the Alinsky strategy of isolating your enemy. You can’t boycott 20 states.

Posted by Wild Thing at May 26, 2010 06:45 AM