An email being circulated to state legislators was passed along to me:
Rep. Drazkowski has a bill to “Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act”. The Arizona Immigration Act.
The bill will be outside of Room 247 until 11:30 AM today and Rep. Drazkowski will have it available on the floor today.
Legislative Assistant to:
Rep. Randy Demmer (29A)
Rep. Steve Drazkowski (28B)
Rep. Tim Kelly (28A)
Now, Cinco de Mayo, commemorating the Mexican victory over the French in the Battle of Pueblo, isn’t a major holiday in Mexico, but in the United States, it is a celebration of Mexican culture. Is the timing intended to stir the pot?
News sources indicated that Drazkowski, whose wife is an immigrant from Canada, had planned to introduce the legislation. Yesterday, the City Pages blotter reported Drazkowski defends Arizona-style immigration bill:
“I have reviewed the Arizona law and am in the process of drafting a parallel bill,” he confirms. “The Democrats won’t let us pass it, but we’ll get some discussion started on it, and then after the elections, I expect we’ll have a legislature that will be ready to pass it.”
Extrapolating from a 2005 study by the state’s Office of Strategic Planning and Results Management, Drazkowski claims that undocumented immigrants are costing taxpayers a quarter of a billion dollars a year in state services. . .
. . .Drazkowski realizes this probably isn’t going to win any Hispanic converts to the GOP, but he’s not worried about folding up the big tent.
“This isn’t about politics,” he says. “Sure, there are some open-border constituencies out there and they are tied to the Democrat Party, but then there are those of us who just want to bring safety to families. We’ve got really got widespread support on this.”
Will there be a robust public debate on this bill? A recent U of M study, commissioned by the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, Minnesota Agri-Growth Council, Minnesota Nursery and Landscape Association, Minnesota Milk Producers Association and Hospitality Minnesota supports comprehensive immigration reform, while inventorying study after study that contradicts the 2005 Pawlenty report Draz references, which looked only at short-term costs.
Indeed, the researchers concluded:
In fact, the question that the state of Minnesota and the nation should be addressing is what will be done if economic conditions and harsh immigration policies further reduce the number of foreign-born workers. As a number of researchers have demonstrated, the potential consequences are dire indeed.
The report is worth the read. Another answer is found in this Indymedia Youtube: