More City Councils Move Toward Arizona Boycotts Over Immigration Law
While a number of local lawmakers want their states to adopt immigration measures similar to Arizona's, there is also a growing crop of lawmakers aiming to shun the state for its controversial measure.
The city of San Francisco was at the head of the trend, when its board of supervisors on Tuesday considered a measure to off the city's economic ties with Arizona. The board has yet to officially approve the boycott, but San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom has imposed an immediate moratorium on city-related travel to Arizona.
The Arizona law at the center of the controversy, signed by Arizona's governor on Friday, would require immigrants to carry documents verifying their immigration status. It would also require police officers to question a person about his or her immigration status if there is "reasonable suspicion" that person may be illegally in the country.
City councils in Washington, D.C. , and Los Angeles are also considering economic boycotts of Arizona, CBS News Congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes reported (watch her report).
"We want them to be the last state that does this," Los Angeles City councilwoman Janice Hahn said.
Seven members of the Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday signed a proposal for a boycott, the Los Angeles Times reports, calling for the city to "refrain from conducting business" or participating in conventions in Arizona.
City council members in Oakland today are also proposing a city boycott, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
As California officials at the municipal level continue to act, the leader of the state Senate, Darrell Steinberg, is asking Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to take action as well, according to the L.A. Times. He sent a letter to the governor asking for an inventory of Arizona businesses and agencies that do business with California.
In Washington, the city council could consider a resolution for a boycott of Arizona as early as next Tuesday, the Washington Post reports.
"Anything where government is sponsoring any sort of profiling that I believe is racist, we have to take a stand against as the nation's capital," said council member Michael A. Brown, who plans to introduce the resolution.
Like San Francisco's mayor, St. Paul, Minn., Mayor Chris Coleman on Wednesday issued an executive order banning city-funded travel to Arizona, the Twin Cities Pioneer Press reports.
Arizona Gov. Brewer said Monday at a town hall that she doesn't believe the law is "going to have the kind of economic impact that some people think it might." However, Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon may say differently.
Sacramento, Calif., Mayor Kevin Johnson on Wednesday called for an economic boycott but quickly changed his tune after hearing from Gordon, the Sacramento Bee reports. Gordon asked Johnson, who has ties to Arizona, to reconsider the boycott to avoid hurting the Phoenix economy anymore. Gordon reportedly said his city has already lost five conventions as a result of the law. Johnson is now simply flying to Arizona to discuss the immigration law with officials there.
The law is already facing court challenges, but if it goes into effect in July as planned, New York City could also consider a boycott. City Controller John Liu today called for a boycott of Arizona-made products if it goes into effect, the New York Daily News reports. In the meantime, the city council is considering a resolution formally condemning the Arizona law.
New York state assemblyman Adriano Espaillat called on immigrant players in Major League Baseball to boycott the 2011 All-Star game in Phoenix, according to the Daily News. Others around the country are calling for the MLB to move the All-Star game to another state.
"Baseball has been very, very good to us," Espaillat said. "We want our ballplayers to stand up."
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