GOP draws line on immigration

Platform to embrace SB 1070-type laws

By Daniel González and Bob Ortega

The Arizona Republic

Republican leaders have endorsed an immigration-platform plank for next week’s GOP convention that supports Arizona-style laws aimed at cracking down on illegal immigration.

The move likely will appeal to conservatives but could alienate Hispanics at a time when Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is trying to woo Latino voters.

The immigration plank, which says “state efforts to reduce illegal immigration must be encouraged, not attacked,” was modified late Tuesday to reflect a tougher tone at the urging of Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, according to the Hill, a Washington, D.C., newspaper that covers Capitol Hill.

Kobach helped write Arizona’s immigration-enforcement law known as Senate Bill 1070 and is a national proponent of laws aimed at driving illegal immigrants out of the country through a strategy called attrition through enforcement. That strategy involves making illegal immigrants’ lives in this country as difficult as possible.

The tougher language had been in the GOP’s 2008 platform but was not in this year’s draft until the party’s platform committee restored it Tuesday, according to media reports. The platform will be submitted for approval at the Republican National Convention, which gets under way in Tampa on Monday.

The plank also demands that the U.S. Department of Justice withdraw lawsuits against immigration laws in Arizona and other states. The lawsuits have contended the laws are unconstitutional on the grounds that immigration enforcement is the responsibility of the federal government, not states.



New voting rules could make it harder than ever to get Latinos to the polls/Cronkite News

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August 2012