Russell Pearce's Police State Bill SB 1070 Goes to Committee of the Whole and Third Read Tuesday

The state House has just posted the agendas for its Committee of the Whole and Third Reads for Tuesday: Russell Pearce's police state legislation SB 1070 is the first order of business.

Pearce was pushing the legislation hard on this week's Sunday Square-Off on Channel 12, claiming he has the votes to get it passed, and spewing all the bogus factoids he could come up with to defend the poorly-written, unconstitutional bill, with its unfunded mandates to cities, counties and towns.

The Mesa lawmaker has even insinuated that he will take the legislature hostage Tuesday by holding a day-long hearing with ranchers and farmers from the border who supposedly want the bill.

Let's hope they read the thing, because the bad news for them is that it would do absolutely nothing to prevent a death like that of rancher Rob Krentz, who many suspect may have been murdered by an illegal alien.

Instead the bill will drain local coffers and force cops to run around enforcing immigration statutes to the "full extent permitted by federal law," instead of investigating robberies, rapes and murders.

You know, like the killing of Rob Krentz.

The bill would essentially require that everyone in the state have their "papers" on them at all times. Otherwise, you can be held until your info is verified. Even if you are a U.S. citizen.

Fortunately, there is pushback on Pearce's bill from all sides.

Libertarians, like those at Ernie Hancock's Freedom's Phoenix, oppose the "papers please" aspect of the bill, and its back door to a national ID card.

Law enforcement officials, such as Yuma County Sheriff Ralph Ogden are saying the legislature should hold off on passage of the legislation, because it will place an unfair financial strain on counties, cities and towns.

Businesspersons, such as those with the Arizona Employers for Immigration Reform (AEIR), are against it, and have partnered with religious groups, such as Arizona Interfaith Network(AIN), to block it.

Then there's the ACLU, the Arizona Association of Chiefs of Police, the Catholic Church, the state Attorney General's office, and on and on.

Pearce is developing last minute floor amendments to placate those Republicans who know a bad bill when they see it. My sources say that Republican legislators fear reprisals from Russell Pearce and his wacko followers if they don't vote for it.

The big question is, will these GOPers stand firm against Pearce's bullying tactics? Will they walk away from the voice vote on the COW, or perhaps not be present when it's time for a roll call vote on Third Read?

If they cave, the bill should head back to the state Senate for approval of the heavily amended version and on to Governor Jan Brewer, who lacks the stones to stand up to Pearce and veto it.

The Tucson advocacy group Border Action Network is rallying people for a demonstration at the Governor's office Wednesday.

Pearce will be at the Capitol Tuesday at high-noon giving a press conference. AEIR and AIN have a joint press conference at 10 a.m. the same day. 

Talk about a donnybrook. The OK Corral is more like it. With words instead of guns, hopefully. 

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