Many Immigrants Leaving Georgia Behind

Jeremy Redmon and Mario Guevara, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, June 8, 2011

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The single mother is one of many illegal immigrants in metro Atlanta who say they are fleeing Georgia before the state’s tough new immigration enforcement law takes effect on July 1. Others say they are making similar plans in case opponents of the new law are unable to block it in the courts.

These developments show Georgia’s new law is having its desired impact, even weeks before it is scheduled to become law. But the law also is starting to produce a ripple effect.

Businesses that cater to the region’s Hispanic residents say the new law has sown fear among immigrants, scaring away their customers and employees. A grocery store chain that serves Hispanic immigrants says the new law has led to sharp cuts in sales at some of its locations, forcing it to consider closing one of its spots. And the pastors of local Hispanic churches say some of their parishioners are leaving Georgia and taking the donations that support charitable causes with them.

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Signed into law last month, House Bill 87 authorizes police to investigate the immigration status of suspects under certain conditions and arrest illegal immigrants and take them to jail. It also punishes people who knowingly harbor or transport illegal immigrants while committing another crime or use fake identification to get a job in Georgia.

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Arizona experienced an exodus of immigrants after it enacted a similar law last year. An estimated 100,000 Hispanics, mostly Mexicans, left the state between January and November of last year, partly because of Arizona’s law, according to a report released last year by BBVA Research, which based its findings on U.S. census data.

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  • Brendan

    It appears that the Georgia GOP finally got nervous about Georgia losing its white majority and becoming a permanent Democrat state like California, and decided to act.

  • 38specialady

    Unfortunately, they will move to some other bleeding-heart liberal state where they will continue to bleed our country dry. I hope Arizona, Alabama, and Georgia have tipped the row of dominoes.

  • Lucas

    I find it intersting that these aritcles always lament about the negative economic impact on certain businesses with the loss of illegal immigrant customers when laws are enforced.

    This is equal to the local gun store lamenting about the drop in ammunition sales because the cops are chasing the gang bangers out of town.

    Do they ever stop to consider the exponential rewards that such enforcement brings? No they don’t because that would defeat the purpose of the propaganda.

  • rjp

    3 — Lucas wrote: This is equal to the local gun store lamenting about the drop in ammunition sales because the cops are chasing the gang bangers out of town.

    The local gun store would never face lamenting the loss of gun sales because the gang bangers had been chased out of town because it would probably mean that an area that had previously heavily resticted gun sales had recently reduced barriers to gun ownership and sales would be though the roof.

  • OleWhiteBroad

    And people wonder why I love the South??? Georgia and Alabama have the right idea, friends — all states should take a lesson!!!

  • June

    I’m still waiting for the White House to start suing these states who dare to try to protect the lives and welfare of their own citizens. Seems, so far, it’s just Arizona that BHO, DHS and the Justice(?) Dept. are going after. Could it be that since AZ. is the “gateway” for the invasion, they definitey don’t want to stop it? I finally see a glimmer of light for our side. If every state would roll up the welcome mat, perhaps we’d finally see an end to the takeover of our country.

  • Shawn (the female)

    That’s typical of the AJC of course. But I would like to debate Jeremy and Mario…everywhere I go this state is still crawling with Mexicans and their fat, cell-phone addicted wives and their litters. You can’t swing a cat without them appearing somewhere.

  • Blaak Obongo

    Yet another teary bleeding-heart whine. But considering that this treacly propaganda screed was scribbled by “Jeremy Redmon and Mario Guevara,” who could expect anything less?

  • Jack

    “A grocery store chain that serves Hispanic immigrants says the new law has led to sharp cuts in sales at some of its locations, forcing it to consider closing one of its spots.”

    Translation: I am making dirty money stolen from the American taxpayer and am irritated it will not continue.

    I would have more respect for a good old drug dealer or prostitute. At least they don’t try and justify their illegal behavior.

    “And the pastors of local Hispanic churches say some of their parishioners are leaving Georgia and taking the donations that support charitable causes with them.”

    Good riddance.

  • Daniel

    It all sounds good on paper but I think the bad economy is having more of an effect on the Mexicans than this new law.

    When this law goes into effect it will be months before we see any noticable change in the hispanic population. The Mexicans are not dumb they will wait to see if this law is actually enforced.

    So far it’s: More Work = More Mexican & Less work = Less Mexicans. More the law of supply and demand than anything else.

  • joe

    I’m sure if it’s effective it will be overturned by the court or ignored.

    To reply to an earlier comment, yes, if the problems is not addressed it will be like California where Democrats permanently rule now.

    My guess is that a liberal judge will overturn or alter the law to make it ineffective. Not because it’s unconstitutional; It’s all about ideology.

  • Anonymous

    The government has another scheme to keep us perpetually flooded with unskilled third worlders and there’s another way employers can avoid being penalized by laws like this. It’s called the H2B Visa and they use it to bring over lots of people to do jobs like gardening, horse grooming and farm work. I just don’t believe with 10 percent unemployment that there is a need to import so many people to do these jobs. I suspect it’s being done to keep wages low for the working poor in this country and also maintain some kind of upper hand over their employees. If Jose complains about working conditions or wants a raise, the employer will put them out on the curb like a sack of garbage and report to ICE that Mr. Garcia is no longer employed with them.