Business Groups Can’t Stop Fla. Immigration Bills

Bill Kaczor, Miami Herald, April 14, 2011

Neither tears, nor prayer nor opposition from influential business groups could sway a House committee that voted largely along party lines Thursday for a Republican-sponsored bill that would follow Arizona’s lead and make illegal immigration a state crime in Florida.

That legislation and a similar Senate bill also would require employers to use a federal database to verify the immigration status of new hires.

While other opponents, some identifying themselves as undocumented immigrants, knelt in prayer and two young girls burst into tears, business lobbyists argued the legislation would hurt Florida’s tourism and agriculture industries while reducing tax revenues.

“Just the mere consideration of this bill is causing the image of the state of Florida to be tarnished not only nationally but internationally,” said Florida Chamber of Chamber Vice President Adam Babington. He said that “will have economic consequences.”

{snip}

Besides up to 20 days in jail and a $100 fine for a first offense, undocumented immigrants would face enhanced penalties if convicted of other crimes. Like Arizona’s law, police could check someone’s immigration status only if that person is under investigation for another criminal offense if there is a reasonable suspicion they’re in the country illegally.

The Florida legislation does not include Arizona provisions also requiring all immigrants to obtain or carry immigration registration papers and making it a state criminal offense for an illegal immigrant to seek work or hold a job.

A study by the Pew Hispanic Center ranked Florida third among the states with an estimated 825,000 unauthorized immigrants, or 4.5 percent of the state’s population, last year.

{snip}

It’s got the support, though, of Scott, who already has issued an executive order requiring state agencies and contractors to use the federal database when hiring.

“If people are in our country and violating the law then we ought to be able to ask if they’re legal or not,” Scott said.

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  • ice

    “Just the mere consideration of this bill is causing the image of the state of Florida to be tarnished not only nationally but internationally,” said Florida Chamber of Chamber Vice President Adam Babington. He said that “will have economic consequences.”

    Nonsense!

    Just take note of who it is that spewing such propaganda. It’s the greedy corporate miscreants who stand to make huge profits from slave labor.

  • Tim in Indiana

    “Just the mere consideration of this bill is causing the image of the state of Florida to be tarnished not only nationally but internationally,” said Florida Chamber of Chamber Vice President Adam Babington.

    I’ve got an idea: then let’s pass similar legislation in Arizona, Indiana and indeed every state of the union. Then poor little Florida won’t have to bear the brunt of it.

    If the federal government had had the guts to enforce its own laws in the first place, then the burden of this wouldn’t have had to fall on the states.

  • Tactless Old Pedo

    It’s about time EVERY state in the union passes similar legislation. WE CANNOT AFFORD THESE ILLEGALS – they cost our country between $334 and $436 BILLION dollars annually, for their welfare handouts, healthcare, jail time, criminal investigation time, sending them home when caught, education costs, etc. etc. etc. – it never ends. Our country is teetering on the edge of (a) losing the dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency, (b) runaway inflation, and (c) total collapse of the dollar. WHY are we even considering paying one red cent for ANY illegal???? Let’s hear it for FLORIDA – go team go!!!

  • John Engelman

    This is a good law, but it is not clear to me from the article that it punishes employers of illegal immigrants.

  • John Engelman

    The Republican Party exists in order to advance the interests of the business community. It will be interesting to see how effective this law is, and how thoroughly it will be enforced.

  • June

    So the Florida Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce thinks that the image of his state will be tarnished if the laws is enforced? What convuluted thinking and what moral corruption he’s spouting. Florida, like California, is already thought of as a third world state. We in Texas are following rapidly, as are other states which are the destination of the poor and uneducated who invade our nation at will. And this occurs because there is no one to say, “NO MAS!”

  • Anonymous

    Propaganda, indeed! Could this reporter possibly lay it on any more thickly? “Undocumented immigrants” kneeling in prayer? Young girls bursting into tears?! No mention of the prayers of those of us who wish merely to live in peace in our own country – or of all the tears that will be shed in the wake of crimes committed by these pious “unauthorized immigrants”.

    Lord, how I hate these euphemisms they use. Illegals are “undocumented immigrants” in the same way that someone breaking into a home to rob and kill the homeowners is an “undocumented house guest”.

    And notice how the opposition claims that the “mere consideration” of this bill is some kind of thought crime that will have dire consequences. The sky is falling! And yet, all the bill requires is that employers check immigration status, and that police do the same if a person is already suspected of another crime.

    So, Florida just wants to know if a criminal is a legal resident or not, but according to the hysterics on the other side, to even say or think such a thing is a heresy that will bring on the Apocalypse! If people resort to such demagoguery, it’s because they HAVE no rational argument to put forth.

  • Kingoldby

    When I last spent some time in Florida (during the housing boom) I particularly noticed that all the construction workers were of Mexican apparance. I only noticed two obviously American workers, one black and one white, in the three months I was there.

    I imagine that all those workers, at below minimum wage, with no benefits, no social security taxes and no insurance, must have added greatly to the speculators profit margins. I also imagine that it meant fewer good blue collar jobs for actual Americans.

    But who cares about blue collar American workers now? Seriously, who actually represents their interests?

  • Anonymous

    I live in central Florida. This AM I was driving a stretch of SR 17-92/441 through Kissimmee up into Orlando proper. The majority of the signs–billboards and businesses–were in Spanish. Attorneys advertised “Accidente and SSI litigation.” Mexican-style produce marts abounded. The only relief came as I drove through the black section approaching downtown Orlando: mostly guys with pants down to their knees shuffling in the middle of the road dodging traffic, a few strip joints, and a couple of hookers still straggling around, probably from the night before. Orlando, “The City Beautiful.” Go Chamber of Commerce.

  • Eurobeing

    Many of those workers may have been from other parts of the Southern Hemisphere true many may have been Mexicans but other may have come from Panama, Cuba and Puerto Rico.

    As far as Florida passing some sort of Arizona style law remember George Wallace carried that state duing the 72 presidential bid. He actually did much to bring the Democratic party back so some semblance of sanity after 1968. Edmund Muskie was appalled but none the less Fla. still has a pretty conservative core. This proves it.

  • crazyhorse

    I recall that when I turned 18 I had to register for conscription ,and I had to carry a card at all times to prove this, or go to jail.

  • Anonymous

    I lived in Florida for two years about a decade ago and I thought the immigration problem was bad then. Prior to that it used to be a really nice place to visit and I’d frequently go on vacation there and also to see my parents who lived in Ocala. I thought myself lucky when I landed a job in Orlando. However, the city had changed alot over the last 15 years and I found it intolerable to live there. Orange Blossom Trail, which had always been a rough area but was majority White had turned into a black enclave with significant numbers of Haitians, Jamaicans and other Caribbean blacks. Historic Colonial Drive is now a mishmash of Saigon, Chinatown, the Phillipines and other outposts of the Far East. The streets are lined with streamers, Buddha statues and oriental restaurants. International Drive is now Little Calcutta. The city itself has a large Puerto Rican element which migrated from New York. I decided to live in Lake County which is directly north of the city. I bought a house there and commuted 50 miles each way every day just to get away from the multicult. Little did I know that Lake County was the fastest growing county in Florida. It may still be for all I know. It was growing like crazy and we were starting to get overflow from the Orlando area from people with the same idea I had. Then more and more minorities started moving in the area. I was growing tired of the commute and I sold my house and moved to the upper South and couldn’t be more happier now. Nice weather all year round and miles of beaches just don’t compensate for the lower quality of life I experienced living in Florida.

  • ghw

    “Just the mere consideration of this bill is causing the image of the state of Florida to be tarnished not only nationally but internationally,” said Florida Chamber of Chamber Vice President Adam Babington. He said that “will have economic consequences.”

    ……………………….

    It certainly will, Mr. Babington, you traitor! I will make it a point to stay away from your state and spend my money elsewhere. Such as in Arizona.

    We should all take pains to let him know this.

  • underdog

    It is not clear to me from the article whether or not this bill is law and I don’t know how sausage-making from intial sponsorship of a bill to final enactment works in Florida.

    But it seems to me of late that Republicans in many states are doing a good job (by appearances) of INTRODUCING anti illegal alien legislation in one state chamber only to have it die in the other (also Republican controlled) chamber.

    Kind of makes one wonder. How do you say “the we tried charade” in Spanglish?

  • Anonymous

    “Lord, how I hate these euphemisms they use. Illegals are “undocumented immigrants” in the same way that someone breaking into a home to rob and kill the homeowners is an “undocumented house guest”. ”

    Yeah, so do I. Why don’t we do that with all crimes.

    -Burglary/Tresspassing-Undocumented guest

    -Robbery/Embezzelment-Undocumented financial withdrawal

    -Theft-Undocumented borrowing ie.money/car etc.

    -Rape-unrequited love

    -child molestation-unrequited young love

    -assault-undocumented physical contact

    -murder-undocumented execution

    There, there isn’t that all better.LOL

  • Anonymous

    I’m wondering just how effective are state laws against illegal immigration anyhow? I thought Congress passed a law some years ago that allowed state and local police officers to coordinate their efforts with ICE to detain illegals. Where I live, I have called the local sheriff’s office to learn that when they arrest someone for breaking the law, in the process they find out they’re in the country illegally. They contact ICE to turn them over to the FEDS but many times they don’t bother to show up so they have to let them go. It seems to me real enforcement won’t happen until the Federal government gets onboard with it.

  • Californian

    All this ought to give pause to conservatives who are hellbent for leather on supporting capitalism. Here we clearly see a sector of business openly supporting open borders and the blatant flagrancy of American law. You also wonder if America had a stronger union movement if it would not become a source of resistance to illegal immigration, since illegal aliens lower working class wages.

  • Turista

    crazyhorse wrote:

    “I recall that when I turned 18 I had to register for conscription ,and I had to carry a card at all times to prove this, or go to jail.”

    ________________________

    And as I recall, when I crossed the border into Mexico as a tourist, I was issued a Tourist Card, which you MUST carry with you AT ALL TIMES. Or else. Not to do so is a violation of the law.

    It’s alright for them to do it there, why not here?

  • Fr. John

    “While other opponents, some identifying themselves as undocumented immigrants, ”

    Umm, excuse me. Didn’t they mean to say, some identifying themselves as ILLEGAL ALIENS?

    Yeah, right.

    Nothing to see here… except FLA has MILLIONS of CRIMINALS like these, in their state.

    I applaud the Whites of Florida for taking the first step in taking back their land from the ‘reconquista.’

  • sam

    I come from Schenectady, NY. WE’ve always had blacks but just like that one day our town blew up with hispanics. They were simply there. And they don’t stop coming. MY mom tells me of the crimes committed there–always by black or brown. The beautiful areas once inhabited by Whites, have been invaded. I cannot understand why we have done this to ourselves. All we have to do is simply stop it.

  • Strider

    Those “Mexicans” that Kingoldby (#8) says he saw were more likely Puerto Ricans. There’s been a huge influx of them into central Florida the past ~15 years. Supposedly they were fleeing the endemic drug culture of their island; naturally, they brought that culture with them and have made Orlando the heroin capital of the Southeast. Their social pathologies differ from blacks’ only in degree, not in kind. Unfortunately, thanks to President McKinley and W.R. Hearst the PRs are American citizens and therefore cannot be expelled.

    To Anon (#12): The runaway growth in Lake County has massively slowed due to the recession & collapse of the housing bubble. The main problem was county commissioners in the pockets of developers; most of them have been voted out, thank goodness. Still, the damage is done. When I moved here in 1995 you could drive south on US 27 from the Turnpike to I-4 with no traffic lights. Now that stretch is a hideous, congested jungle of stores, homes and apartments. Ditto SR 50 east of Clermont.

    To Californian (#17): Unfortunately, unions have capitulated to the open-borders crowd. They figure ignorant, illiterate foreigners are the best remaining source of new members (and their dues).