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”).