I had meant to report on this earlier and a recent entry by La Shawn Barber
reminded me to do so. La Shawn has a great entry on it and I urge you to read it at the link above.
The Proposition, which was passed by fifty-six percent vote approval on November 2, 2004 -- including forty-seven percent of Hispanic voters voting in favor of it -- allows workers of government services to ask the immigration status of a person applying for services.
A judge gave Governor Janet Napolitano approval to sign it into law on December 10, 2004.
The Arizona Republic
A federal judge on Wednesday lifted an order barring Proposition 200 from becoming law, clearing the way for state, county and municipal employees to immediately start reporting to immigration authorities suspected undocumented immigrants seeking public benefits.
U.S. District Judge David Bury's decision allowed Gov. Janet Napolitano to issue an executive order enacting the controversial voter-approved legislation Wednesday afternoon.
The initiative requires state and local employees to verify the immigration status of people applying for public benefits and report undocumented immigrants or face possible criminal prosecution.
On November 30th Judge Bury had issued an order which barred the state from enforcing the proof of legality
portions of proposition 200. That order was lifted and the law was put in place.
"This is a huge win for the taxpayers of the state of Arizona, the rule of law and the Constitution," said Rep. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, who helped craft the initiative. "And it sends a message that we have the right to report those people who are in the country illegally, especially when they're attempting fraud."
The fight isn't over however. Groups that actively support illegal aliens and open borders plan to appeal to the 9th district court of appeals in San Francisco -- a notoriously liberal circuit.
Illegal aliens of course are outraged at losing their services and the potential of them being deported if they do apply. They have already played the race card and the child card claiming that any benefits they receive are for their children.
"I think it's racist," Garcia said. "They don't understand if (undocumented immigrants) receive help, it's not for them, it's for the kids who are U.S. citizens. They're trying to put pressure on immigrants, and it's very dangerous . . . because some won't seek help."
State workers who fail to follow the law face a Class 2 misdemeanor punishable by up to four months in jail and a $750 fine.
If this law is followed through, as the people of Arizona have voted, and there is a noticeable impact on all the fraud perpetrated by these lawbreakers, we can expect other states to fall in line and start dealing with this drain on our system that continues to increase year over year.
In California they are already looking at their own proposition restricting illegal aliens from services. Congressman Darrell Issa, the man behind the recall of Gray Davis, has hinted that he may be willing to fund a new ballot measure along those lines if the chance of getting the required 600,000 signatures by February 21, 2005 looks promising.
For more information on the costs of illegal aliens to Arizona taxpayers go read La Shawn Barbers entry "Proposition 200 Is Now Arizona State Law".