Newly Proposed Florida Immigration Reform--'One Step Further' Than AZ Law

Meredith Jessup

8/11/2010 10:35:00 AM - Meredith Jessup
Get ready for another heated state showdown over immigration law to add to the ongoing debate. 

Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum this morning proposed new state legislation that would tough his state's law enforcement measures against illegal immigrants.  Reuters reports:

McCollum, who is engaged in a tough election race as a Republican candidate for the state governorship, presented the proposed legislation in Orlando.

His office said the proposed Florida immigration legislation goes "one step further" than a similar law recently introduced in Arizona, which has triggered protests and a constitutional challenge from President Barack Obama's administration.

The Miami Herald reports that the new measure would require Florida police officers to check suspected illegal immigrants' citizenship status during lawful stops.  In addition, Florida businesses would be required to use a national registry to check workers' authorization and the state would echo federal law in requiring anyone who is not a U.S. citizen to carry immigration documentation or face state misdemeanor charges.

Update: Florida's definitely not the only state working to tackle this issue in the absence of federal action.  The Economist today has a feature examining Utah's latest proposal...