Sen. Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock) is set to introduce a bill to encompass most of what the anti-illegal immigration folks want done. The AJC has an article about the bill. It appears the Senate debate will be led by Sen. Rogers with the opposition led by Sen. Sam Zamarripa (D-Atlanta). Here is a sampling of comments from the article:
“This is a very important issue to a lot of people and there are a million ideas out there about how to solve the problem,” Rogers said in an interview. “I felt that rolling all of this into one bill gives us the opportunity to bring everybody together and debate these five parts of the immigration problem.”
“This is a bill that affects everyone who enters into a relationship with someone who might be here illegally,” said state Sen. Sam Zamarripa (D-Atlanta), chairman of the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials. “I don’t think anybody will support this if they understand it.”
“I know there has been a lot of concern about a business having to be put in the position of policing immigration,” (Georgia Chamber President George) Israel said. “If someone has papers that are not legitimate and they’ve been through the I-9 [verification] process … then under federal law they are considered to have done due diligence.”
Ed Phillips, executive vice president of the Home Builders Association of Georgia, acknowledged there is a problem with illegal immigration in the state. “But the problem is they’re putting a job that belongs to federal immigration [officials] onto the backs of businesses,” said Phillips, who has not reviewed the legislation.
Rogers and supporters of get-tough legislation say they are acting because the federal government has failed to do so. “This problem was created over 25 years by the federal government not enforcing our borders,” Rogers said. “We in Georgia are not going to solve it overnight, but this is a good first step.”
On a related topic, I’m told that Sen. Chip Rogers will be addressing the Gwinnett County Republican Party this Saturday morning, and that D.A. King, potential independent challenger to Governor Perdue, will be addressing the Gwinnett GOP next Thursday night. These men are speaking as a part of the Gwinnett GOP’s “Immigration Awareness Month.” More information on Gwinnett GOP meetings can be found here.