The Indiana senate passed a sweeping immigration bill that echoes Arizona's tougher measures on illegal immigrants and despite opposition from some of the largest employers and business groups in the state
. The measure, passed on Tuesday night by a vote of 31-18, would allow state and local police to ask a person stopped for infractions like traffic violations for proof of legal residency if the officer has a "reasonable suspicion" they may be in the country illegally. Another provision would call for, with some exceptions, the use of English only in public meetings, on Web sites and in documents. The bill still needs to be adopted by state's House of Representatives, where opponents say they will now turn. The vote "was a key step in the legislative process," the bill's author Sen. Mike Delph said in a statement, adding that the bill will "send a clear message that Indiana will no longer be a sanctuary for people who are in our state and country illegally because of our federal government's failure to act on illegal immigration." Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce officials say the measure would have a chilling effect on business, particularly convention business. "It will have a negative economic impact on the state of Indiana," Chamber Public Policy Director Angela Smith-Jones said, adding that immigration issues should be handled on the federal level. The Chamber feels it has a good chance of lobbying enough House members to block the bill,
Smith-Jones said... http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Indiana-lawmakers-pass-rb-1922441018....
The nation's immigration battle returned to the state Capitol on Tuesday as a key legislative committee passed two major bills that could significantly impact illegal immigrants living in Arizona. The Senate Appropriations Committee became the first state legislative committee in the nation to pass a package of bills intended to challenge the practice of granting citizenship to children born in the U.S. to illegal immigrants. It also approved an "omnibus" bill that would prevent undocumented children from attending school, prohibit illegal immigrants from driving or buying a vehicle and deny illegal immigrants the ability to obtain a marriage license in Arizona
. Hundreds of protesters and supporters gathered outside the chambers Tuesday while dozens waited late into the night to speak to lawmakers. Late Tuesday, the committee had still not heard two remaining immigration-related bills, including one that would force hospitals to ask about citizenship status at some point during admission or treatment. The bills before the Senate Appropriations Committee would alter citizenship for children born in the United States to non-citizens, prevent undocumented children from attending school, prohibit illegal immigrants from driving or purchasing a vehicle and force hospitals to ask about citizenship before providing medical care. Late Tuesday, the committee advanced two of the bills, becoming the first state legislative committee in the nation to pass legislation intended to challenge the practice of granting citizenship to children born in the U.S. to illegal immigrants. Committee members voted 8-5 to approve a controversial package of bills, which would challenge the 14th Amendment interpretation about citizenship. Senate Bill 1308 seeks permission from Congress to set up a system in which states can create separate birth certificates for children who meet a new definition of a citizen and those who do not. SB 1309 creates that new definition of citizen, defining children as citizens of Arizona and the U.S. if at least one of their parents was either a U.S. citizen or a legal permanent U.S. resident. The two bills now go to a vote of the full Senate. The immigration bills -- some of which were added to the agenda at the last minute -- were sent to this committee by Senate President Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, because its Republican members are the Senate's most conservative. But the committee is the first step in a long process, and the bills' ultimate fate is unclear. They still need the support of a majority of the full Senate, a House committee and the full House before reaching the governor or becoming law.
Public surveys indicate many Arizonans support increased efforts to combat illegal immigration, and many political experts say Brewer's decision to sign another immigration bill, Senate Bill 1070, helped keep her in office and elect many of the conservative lawmakers now supporting this new crop of bills. But Democrats and some more moderate Republicans say the bills distract from the state's efforts to attract jobs and restore the economy. "We recognize the concern that individuals have in Arizona about the undocumented-worker problem and the costs to the state government," said Sen. Paula Aboud, D-Tucson. "But if jobs are our focus, if the economy and turning our economy around in Arizona is what's critical, these immigration bills don't do it. They hurt our image." The legislative sponsors of the birthright-citizenship bills have said the goal is to get the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in on the issue. Sen. Ron Gould, R-Lake Havasu City, the primary sponsor of the Senate bills aimed at challenging the interpretation of the 14th Amendment, said at least one parent of all children born in Arizona would have to prove their legal status under the bill "It won't be any more difficult than their parents proving they are eligible to vote in Arizona," Gould said. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Phoenix, disagreed, saying the bill may deny citizenship to children born to parents who both have dual citizenship and owe allegiance to the U.S. and a foreign country. Brenda Rascon, a Mesa resident and biology doctoral student, spoke against the bill. "I reject your policies, which I find rationally and morally insulting," she said. "Do not undermine the Constitution." Valerie Roller, Republican chairwoman of Legislative District 14 in Phoenix, supported the bill. "We should never give away something as valuable as our American citizenship cheaply," she said. The Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce opposed the bills, saying the matter needs to be addressed at the federal level. "I don't think anyone can make the argument that Arizona is the right place to discuss the meaning of the 14th Amendment," Arizona Chamber CEO Glenn Hamer said. "This will put Arizona through another trial and hurt innocent businesspeople who are just trying to get ahead." Gould accused Hamer's organization of being "open border because you like cheap labor." Sen. Rich Crandall, R-Mesa, was the only Republican to vote no on the pair of bills. He said he doesn't believe the dozen or so other states considering similar bills will actually pass them, leaving Arizona standing alone again, referring to Arizona's tough immigration measure, Senate Bill 1070. "This is not a conversation about what the intent was of a conversation that happened over 200 years ago," Crandall said. "This is a vote about whether we are going to be the first and only state to have two birth certificates." Sen. Rick Murphy, R-Glendale, voted for the bill, asking how long Arizona should wait for the federal government to take up the issue before giving up and trying to fix the issue itself. Senate Bill 1611, which Pearce introduced about 24 hours before the hearing, passed on a 7-6 vote. Among other things, the "omnibus" bill would make it a crime for illegal immigrants to drive in Arizona, require proof of citizenship to enroll in K-12 public or private schools as well as community colleges and universities, and ban illegal immigrants from buying a vehicle. Pearce said his bill does not contain new ideas but strengthens existing laws. "It tightens up the laws and makes sure illegal is illegal," Pearce said. "This is about protection of the taxpayer."
Sinema objected, saying the bill includes 16 substantive changes, many of which are similar to bills Pearce has unsuccessfully proposed in prior years. Crandall voted against the measure, saying he was concerned about the bill's effect on tourism. "This is not what we stand for," he said. "We don't want people to fly in for a big golf tournament or auto auction and have to bring their birth certificate. I think we're better than this." Committee Chairman Sen. Andy Biggs, R-Gilbert, voted for the measure. "We need to have the moral courage to deal with this issue when there's a vacuum at the federal level," he said. However, Biggs also said he had concerns about some of the language and would work with Pearce to address those issues. Gov. Jan Brewer on Tuesday said she had not yet read the bill and declined to say whether she would support it. "I'll be watching and listening and learning as it moves through the process," Brewer said...http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/news/articles/2011/02/23/2...
Writing in the Washington Post, George Will begins a splendid profile of Governor Scott Walker by reminding us that Madison, Wisconsin used to style itself as "the Athens of the Midwest." These days, the similarities are indeed pronounced, and not at all flattering. In the city of Athens, Greece, an interesting new mutation of anarchy has appeared: the "I Won't Pay" movement. As described by the Associated Press, it's a combination of labor union members and Communist Party activists (funny how those flavors of collectivism combine so readily!) who prevent people from paying for municipal transportation, highway tolls, and even fees at state hospitals. They do this by blockading toll booths, sabotaging ticket machines, and encouraging other Greek citizens to stiff the government for public services, any way they can. Greece lies in a pool of her own blood at the base of socialism's cliff, crushed on the rocks of unsustainable government spending and a moribund economy
The "I Won't Pay" crowd is upset by the government's new austerity measures, and (justifiably) angered by years of widespread corruption.
It's grimly amusing to watch socialists wail in surprise and fury when they discover their government is corrupt.
So was every other
socialist and communist government on the planet, throughout the sad history of collectivist thought. Corruption is an inherent feature of collectivism.
There are no large, honest governments, and there never will be.
When political power becomes one of the most valuable commodities in an economy, it will
be bought, sold, and traded. "The people have paid already through their taxes, so they should be able to travel for free," an activist told the Associated Press while picketing a metro ticket booth. That's a fine example of the kind of thinking that turned Greece into a basket case, and music to a communist's ears.
An atmosphere of anarchy provides excellent acoustics for the siren song of collective ownership.
Things may seem desperate now, oppressed workers, but serve and obey the State, and everything will be provided for "free!"
The vastly more efficient principle of expecting the people who actually ride
a train to pay for the service is confusing to childlike minds. Newspaper columnist Dionysis Gousetis made an interesting point in criticizing the idealistic freeloaders: "The course from initial lawlessness to final wanton irresponsibility is like a spreading cancer."
This is always a danger with civil disobedience.
What better word for the crowds of public union employees marching around "the Athens of the Midwest" than "irresponsible?" From teachers using their students as political props and tossing around Hitler references, to doctors writing fraudulent excuses to obtain paid sick leave for union shock troops, to Democrat politicians fleeing the state to shut down a vote, the Wisconsin Left abandoned all responsibility to the people it wishes to subjugate. Prosperity flourishes in an environment of trust, established through mutual respect for the law. No government or private corporation could afford to provide services for very long, if people felt free to use them without paying. It doesn't take much imagination to see the "I Won't Pay" movement as exactly the kind of poison that will murder the deformed economy of Greece in its basket. The notion being pushed against the capitols of Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, and other American states wrestling with powerful and desperate public unions is a related toxin. Call it the "You Will All Pay" movement. It is the idea that taxpayers have no say whatsoever in how public unions are compensated. Union demands override the outcome of the democratic process, to the point where democratic government itself will be shut down, if it seems likely to produce an outcome the union leadership doesn't like.
The people may be able to vote for new representatives, but those representatives are not allowed to adjust the relationship between government and the unions. The "right" of public employees to collective bargaining - which has only existed for about fifty years - is now even more immutable than the Constitution, which at least has an amendment process.
These "public employees" obviously don't recognize their Republican governors, or the people who voted for them, as "employers" they must respectt and serve.
It's a trait they have in common with the Greek anarchists who are sabotaging ticket booths. Using public services without paying for them. forcing the public to pay for civil servants they don't want and cannot afford. Two sides of the same coin, really. Both are demands made in the absence of responsibility, made by people who feel no allegiance to those who sustain them. Both involve the selfish use of public resources, while disregarding inconvenient laws and requirements. They are two separate trails that converge on the road to serfdom. The "I Won't Pay" movement is a little confused about who will end up as the serfs. The public unions of America suffer from no such confusion
Muammar Gaddafi, Libya's long-standing ruler, has reportedly lost control of more cities as anti-government protests continue to sweep the African nation despite his threat of a brutal crackdown. Protesters in Misurata said on Wednesday they had wrested the western city from government control. In a statement on the internet, army officers stationed in the city pledged "total support for the protesters".
The protesters also seemed to be in control of much of the country's east, and an Al Jazeera correspondent, reporting from the city of Tobruk, 140km from the Egyptian border, said there was no presence of security forces. "From what I've seen, I'd say the people of eastern Libya are the ones in control," Hoda Abdel-Hamid, our correspondent, said. She said there were no officials manning the border when the Al Jazeera team crossed into Libya. "All along the border, we didn't see one policeman, we didn't see one soldier and people here told us they [security forces] have all fled or are in hiding and that the people are now in charge, meaning all the way from the border, Tobruk, and then all the way up to Benghazi. "People tell me it's also quite calm in Bayda and Benghazi. They do say, however, that 'militias' are roaming around, especially at night. They describe them as African men, they say they speak French so they think they're from Chad." Major-General Suleiman Mahmoud, the commander of the armed forces in Tobruk, told Al Jazeera that the troops led by him had switched loyalties. "We are on the side of the people," he said. "I was with him [Gaddafi] in the past but the situation has changed - he's a tyrant." Benghazi, Libya's second largest city, was where people first rose up in revolt against Gaddafi's 42-year long rule more than a week ago. The rebellion has since spread to other cities despite heavy-handed attempts by security forces to quell the unrest. With authorities placing tight restrictions on the media, flow of news from Libya is at best patchy. But reports filtering out suggest at least 300 people have been killed in the violence. But Franco Frattini, the Italian foreign minister, said there were "credible' reports that at least 1,000 had died in the clampdown. Amid the turmoil, a defiant Gaddafi has vowed to quash the uprising. He delivered a rambling speech on television on Tuesday night, declaring he would die a martyr in Libya, and threatening to purge opponents "house by house" and "inch by inch". He blamed the uprising in the country on "Islamists", and warned that an "Islamic emirate" has already been set up in Bayda and Derna, where he threatened the use of extreme force. He urged Libyans to take to the streets and show their support for their leader. Several hundred government loyalists heeded his call in Tripoli, the capital, on Wednesday, staging a pro-Gaddafi rally in the city's Green Square. Fresh gunfire was reported in the capital on Wednesday, after Gaddafi called on his supporters to take back the streets from anti-government protesters. But Gaddafi's speech has done little to stem the steady stream of defections from his side. Libyan diplomats across the world have either resigned in protest at the use of violence against citizens, or renounced Gaddafi's leadership, saying that they stand with the protesters. Late on Tuesday night, General Abdul-Fatah Younis, the country's interior minister, became the latest government official to stand down, saying that he was resigning to support what he termed as the "February 17 revolution". He urged the Libyan army to join the people and their "legitimate demands". On Wednesday, Youssef Sawani, a senior aide to Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, one of Muammar Gaddafi's sons, resigned from his post "to express dismay against violence", Reuters reported. Earlier, Mustapha Abdeljalil, the country's justice minister, had resigned in protest at the "excessive use of violence" against protesters, and diplomat's at Libya's mission to the United Nations called on the Libyan army to help remove "the tyrant Muammar Gaddafi". A group of army officers has also issued a statement urging soldiers to "join the people" and remove Gaddafi from power... http://english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2011/02/201122312525669914...
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