Governor Rick Scott remains steadfast in bringing Arizona-style immigration laws to Florida even as members of the state GOP remain wary of the idea. Today, State Rep. William Snyder, R-Stuart, held the first hearing on his bill that would bring such new laws to Florida.
Snyder's bill would mean any non-U.S. residents not found to be carrying alien registration documentation could be charged with a crime, and employers would need to check a federal database to check the immigration status of any potential hires.
Gov. Scott reaffirmed his support of such a law this morning, according to Post on Politics.
"The federal government needs to secure our borders. We need to have an overall immigration policy that is logical and that works and is fair to Americans and fair to people that want to come to our country that we invite to come to our country," Scott said.
Of course, unlike Arizona, Florida only shares borders with other American state. Though our ample coastline is susceptible to illegal penetration.
"At the same time, I also believe that if you're in our country and you do something illegally, you should be able to be asked just like I get asked for my ID if I ever get a traffic ticket, they should be asked if they're legal or not. I clearly don't believe in racial profiling," Scott continued.
We think though there is a difference between asking about immigration status, and making it a crime to not have proof of such immigration status on you at all times.
Interestingly, a number of prominent Republicans in the state are warning against adopting such laws.
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Florida Chamber Foundation president David Brill warned lawmakers Monday that such laws could have a "chilling effect" on foreign investment in the state, while other business leaders echoed his concern.
Others are worried that the required federal database is a flawed system.
Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, former Governor Jeb Bush, Senator Marco Rubio and several prominent Hispanic Republicans in the state have also questioned whether Florida needs to follow Arizona's controversial lead.