Immigration reform bill-Arizona

Article subtitle: 
The majority of Americans still want enforcement-focused efforts like Arizona’s
Article author: 
Alia Beard Rau
Article publisher: 
AZ Central
Article date: 
20 April 2013
Article category: 
National News
Medium
Article Body: 

Arizona has played a prominent role in the nation’s debate on illegal immigration, taking a tough stance on enforcement and pushing for the federal government to secure the border with Mexico.

But the federal immigration-reform measure introduced in Congress last week would take the country in a direction that could leave Arizona’s get-tough policy in the dust and change the state’s role on the issue ...
 
“Arizona has been on the forefront in dealing with this issue,” said Senate President Andy Biggs, R-Gilbert. “Our party, at least, remains adamant on an enforcement track, which is what Arizona has done. SB 1070 is still very popular.” [...]
 
Efforts to pass new immigration-enforcement laws in Arizona have fizzled over the past two years as more moderate Republicans made gains in the Legislature and state business leaders pushed lawmakers to back off the issue.
 
This year, immigration has received little attention at the Legislature, with the exception of a surprising decision by Republican leaders to hear a bill that would have permitted young immigrants [illegal aliens] who have been granted deferred-action status to get driver’s licenses. The committee didn’t vote on the matter, but a hearing on a pro-immigrant proposal would have been impossible two years ago ...
 
Rep. Steve Smith, R-Maricopa-“I respect that (McCain and Flake) are trying to find a solution, but I think many people would agree that we should just fix the border first,” Smith said. “Why does border security have to be wrapped in with immigration reform? Republicans want no path to citizenship.” ...
 
SB 1070’s impact
 
It’s too early to determine how passage of the federal immigration-reform proposal might impact Arizona and other states with SB 1070-like laws. But supporters and opponents agree there likely will be some fallout.
 
“It looks like, upon passage, the illegal population would have legal status,” Smith said. “If you don’t pay your $500 and register, are you still illegal? Do we need to have police asking to see people’s $500 receipt?”