Opponents Say Immigration Enforcement Will Cripple Ga’s Economy
ATLANTA — Illegal immigration continues to be a hot button issue as legislators hold more and more hearings regarding Rep. Matt Ramsey’s bill to enact illegal immigration reform.People for and against the bill packed into the Capitol. Some brought signs showing their disgust for a bill that would mimic Arizona’s. Ramsey said the bill is similar to Arizona’s but they are tweaking it to make sure “it is the most powerful bill possible that will hold up to the Constitution.
“”We are going to work through and make sure we provide an effective measure that doesn’t result in a huge mushroom of litigation,” Ramsey said. “It would ultimately cost more in taxpayer dollars.”The American Civil Liberties Union has already threatened to sue if the bill passes.Anti-illegal immigration reform groups told CBS Atlanta the issue should be dealt with by the federal government, not the state.”What our general assembly should be doing is working with our congressional delegation to make sure they can work with President Obama to come up with a workable solution,” said Jerry Gonzales, the executive director for the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials. “We know where are our undocumented workers are, they are in our poultry industry, and agriculture industry, so if what these guys are proposing on doing enforcing the rule of law they are proposing shut down our poultry industry is that really what we want to have happen in our state,” he said.Ramsey said the strongest aspect of the bill is a provision that would require Georgia businesses to sign “an affidavit that swears they are participating in the E-verify program, and provide the enrollment number you receive when you enroll in E-verify,” Ramsey said.Another provision of the bill Ramsey said is different than Arizona’s is that police officers are not required to check immigration status.”This gives the law enforcement community an opportunity to seek verification; this is not a mandate,” said Ramsey.Ramsey said he is going to take all of the input into consideration and make changes as necessary.