Gov. Rick Scott — who agrees that state law enforcement must be allowed to ask suspects about their immigration status — said Tuesday he’ll focus on immigration in 2012.

The State Column reports that Scott “said Tuesday that he will focus on passing a comprehensive immigration reform package during the upcoming 2012 legislative session.”

According to the Column, Scott said, “We should have done an immigration bill. The federal government should be securing our borders. They should have a logical, national immigration policy, a good work visa program policy.”

One of Scott’s first acts as governor was to sign an executive order requiring that all state agencies — and all companies that enter into contracts with state agencies — use E-Verify to check the employment eligibility of their workers

Scott is part of a push by Republicans to pass immigration-enforcement laws similar to Arizona’s controversial S.B. 1070.

In Alabama, GOP Gov. Robert Bentley signed the Alabama immigration-enforcement law (.pdf) that requires the verification of the legal status of a person, makes economic activity by unauthorized aliens illegal in the state, prohibits the hiring of unauthorized aliens, requires participation in the federal E-Verify program and more.

Georgia’s H.B. 87, signed by Republican Gov. Nathan Deal, includes provisions that mandate E-Verify — a measure opposed by the Georgia Farm Bureau — and allow local and state police to arrest illegal immigrants and take them to state and federal jails.

At the federal level, Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has filed three immigration enforcement bills this session: mandatory federal E-Verify, indefinite detention, and HALT (“Hinder the Administration’s Legalization Temptation”).

You May Also Like

Longtime Republican allies face off in bitter state Senate primary: News. Politics. Media

The political alliance and friendship between two stalwarts of the Republican Party in the Tampa Bay area is a thing of the past: For now, they are bitter rivals for a state Senate seat. State Rep. Kevin Ambler and Hillsborough County Commissioner Jim Norman have been political allies for 20 years, but now they are not on speaking terms, as they battle with bruising rhetoric for the Senate District 12 seat being vacated by retiring state Sen. Victor Crist. The winner of the Aug. 24 primary is almost assured the seat; no Democrat has entered the fray, and only two politically unknown write-ins will be on the ballot.