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Tea Party Time! An Immigration Law Like AZ's SB 1070 in CA?

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Protesting Arizona's SB 1070 in May 2010 (Photo by Malingering via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)

Protesting Arizona's SB 1070 in May 2010 (Photo by Malingering via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
Californians could have the chance to get a little bit of Arizona in our immigration law, thanks to a proposal that could be put to our state's voters. Yesterday the California Secretary of State's Office "authorized a signature drive to place an Arizona-style immigration law before California voters," reports the Sacramento Bee.

The proposal was drafted by Michael Erickson, a Bay Area resident who once chaired the Sonoma County Republican Party, but now gets down with the Tea Party. His proposal, called "Support Federal Immigration Law Act," was written to mirror neighbor-state Arizona's controversial SB 1070, which "requires that police investigate a person's legal status if an office has reasonable suspicion of that status."

Some specifics about the proposed law:

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The California proposal would make it a state crime for undocumented persons to seek work while hiding their immigration status, and a state crime for employers to "intentionally or negligently" hire an illegal immigrant. The measure would also require all highway patrol, police, sheriff's deputies and other officers to investigate a person's immigration status if they are "reasonably suspicious" that a person who they stopped is in the country illegally.

Erickson knows that it's going to take the power of the people to pass this law. The first step is to "gather at least 433,971 signatures of registered voters by April 21, 2011, to qualify for an election." His goal is to have it go before voters in the 2012 election.
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