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August 30, 2006

the tie clip says it all

PBS News Hour recently concluded a series on immigration. You can find all segments of this series online. While the content of Sheriff Joe Arpaio's interview did nothing short of make me want to move to Phoenix just to vote against him in two years, his interview should be viewed. Here is the interview with Sheriff Arpaio on the News Hour.

Among the other segments in this series was an articulate discussion by an immigration attorney who deals with the law and people every day. The News Hour interview with Priscilla Labovitz is well worth watching.

Finally, as commentary on Arpaio's tough-as-his-tie-clip enforcement measures, this Op-ed piece in the Tucson Citizen:


Blatant misuse of Arizona's "coyote law" - seeking to prosecute not only human smugglers, but also illegal immigrants as "conspirators" - has been an enormous failure, and rightly so.

Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas has violated the intent of the law in his zeal to prosecute illegal immigrants. State Rep. Jonathan Paton, R-Tucson, says the law he co-sponsored was intended to be used against human smugglers, not their contraband.

Thomas has applied conspiracy laws to the year-old anti-smuggling statute in 263 arrests, but he has yet to obtain one conviction of conspiracy to commit human smuggling.

The "coyote law" was designed to help law enforcement and prosecutors bring the heads of major smuggling rings to justice. Instead, Thomas and Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio are wielding it against those who are not even smugglers, much less conspirators, but are the easiest to apprehend and least able to defend themselves.

Aside from being a misuse of state law, this effort also is a major tactical error. Conviction of key smugglers could have some effect on illegal immigration here, whereas prosecution of a few dozen more illegal immigrants accomplishes virtually nothing.


Posted by almamia at August 30, 2006 6:19 PM


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