an earlier version of it, which means it's a shoo-in to be passed to Governor Jan Brewer, a Republican, for signing.
Gascon hasn't yet returned our call about whether he's glad he got the
hell out of Arizona just in time, but Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon told SF
Weekly that he believes the bill is racist and will be struck down
in the courts for being unconstitutional. Basically, he says, it's
reversing the burden of proof to make a person have to prove he or she isn't
an illegal immigrant.
It does a whole lot of other nasty things in the process, too -- like
stunt the economy and undermine public safety, the mayor adds.
"It will do exactly the opposite of what it intended to do -- provide a
secure Arizona," Gordon told SF Weekly over the phone
drives companies away, it drives employees that are needed away, and it drives
people who spend money away."
"The people that are going to suffer are the citizens and the public," he continued, adding that backers including Arizona senator and bill sponsor Russell Pearce and Arpaio "are sitting they're laughing and smiling while hardworking
people and companies are having trouble making a living here."
The bill also puts the kibosh on any sanctuary city policies, stating
any "legal resident" of Arizona can sue any entity in the state with a
policy that impedes the enforcement of federal immigration laws. That
entity would have to pony up $1,000 to $5,000 in damages for every day
the policy stood after the resident filed the action.
Yes, what happens out in the Arizona desert may seem a world away from San Francisco. Here, a San
Francisco Superior Court judge recently threw out a lawsuit against the city that argued the sanctuary city policy shielded undocumented immigrant Edwin Ramos from federal authorities. The suit was brought by the family of Anthony
Bologna who was allegedly murdered by Ramos alongside his two sons in an
Excelsior district shooting in 2008.
Yet if the whole publicity disaster that led up to the about-face on San Francisco reporting undocumented juveniles to immigration
proves anything, it's that our sanctuary city status is indeed
vulnerable to political sentiment that grows in places in Arizona. Take