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March 6, 2015

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Nevada assemblyman plans to resurrect immigration legislation after ruling

The U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Arizona’s immigration law prompted at least one Republican lawmaker to renew his effort to see similar legislation passed in Nevada.

In response to the opinion handed down by the court, Assemblyman Ira Hansen, R-Sparks, asked legislative bill drafters Monday to rewrite his measure that failed last session.

Hansen said this time, the proposed law will have the advantage of having the constitutional boundaries established by the Supreme Court. But Hansen is under no illusions he’ll be more successful.

“It’s a longshot,” he said.

And not necessarily because of the reasons you’d think.

The biggest opposition to Hansen’s bill last time, he said, didn’t come from immigration activists or the sizeable number of Hispanic lawmakers in Nevada’s Legislature.

“It was the casinos and the bigger contractors,” he said.

Nevada has boomed over the past decade as a place where those without a traditional education could still obtain a robust middle-class lifestyle.

That opportunity helped draw a sizeable Hispanic population — a percentage of whom are here illegally.

According to Department of Homeland Security estimates from 2010 — the most recent available — 260,000 Nevadans were “unauthorized immigrants,” a little less than 10 percent of the state’s population.

Hansen’s bill isn’t the only time Nevada’s powerful industries opposed an effort to institute an Arizona-type immigration law here.

During the heat of the 2010 U.S. Senate Republican primary, former Assemblyman Chad Christensen, R-Las Vegas, filed an initiative petition to put an Arizona law in front of Nevada voters. The state’s gaming lobby quickly stepped up to oppose the effort, including the Nevada Resort Association and Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.

The industry argued such a law could lead to a tourism boycott of Nevada.

But the industry’s workforce is also heavily Hispanic, individuals who could be subjected to the racial profiling that opponents of Arizona’s law say it engenders.

Hansen said he contacted legislative staff on Monday after the Supreme Court ruling to have them draft the portions of his bill from last session, Assembly Bill 430, that would pass constitutional muster. He plans to introduce it during the 2013 Legislative session.

Hansen said he campaigned on cracking down on illegal immigration in 2010 when he first ran for office.

AB 430 received a committee hearing in the 2011 Legislature but no vote. He attributes that not only to the Democratic leadership in the Assembly but also opposition from Nevada’s biggest industries.

“It’s cheap labor, bottom line,” said Hansen, who owns a plumbing company. “In a casino, they’re trying to (staff) up. If you go on a residential construction site, finding an English-speaking guy is pretty rare. They’re trying to do it at the lowest prices possible.”

He was unconcerned with fears of racial profiling, comparing it to police initially looking at males at a crime scene because they commit the bulk of the crimes.

“The bulk of people here illegally are coming from south of the border,” he said. “The bulk of illegals are from Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, somewhere down there. It’s the same as looking for males at a bank robbery. It’s a perfectly rational way of looking at it. It’s not profiling.”

But any piece of that proposal is likely to draw significant opposition.

Gov. Brian Sandoval, a Republican, has said Nevada doesn’t need an Arizona-style law, though he had said he believed it to be constitutional before Monday’s ruling.

Resurrecting a portion of the Arizona immigration bill “is a bad idea,” said Maggie McLetchie, who at the time of Christensen’s proposal was an attorney with the ACLU of Nevada, which challenged his petition. “The fact that so many people acted so quickly to oppose it, and it was so coordinated, shows not only that there are constitutional concerns, but it’s also bad business for Nevada.”

In addition to the business opposition, Democrats, who are expected to maintain control of the Assembly, aren’t likely to take up Hansen’s mantle.

“Everyone from the governor on down has been pretty clear that something like that is not appropriate for the state of Nevada,” said Assemblywoman Lucy Flores, D-Las Vegas. “I certainly wouldn’t advocate for anything allowing for the racial profiling of people. I would advocate against this if (Hansen) were to try to submit it again — the same way I advocated against it last time.”

Anjeanette Damon contributed to this report.

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  1. The only way that this would be "rational" is if it included everyone that looked Asian, European, African and any other -an, were also subjected to prove their legal status.

    That wouldn't include current sources of identification since they can be fake.

    We have to have a different means of proving our legal status.

    Why focus on the undocumented who are simply trying to survive? Go after the source of the problem...American business/employers. Remove the incentive for them to use undocumented workers of any race or place of origin and you remove the incentive to come here for work.

    There are undocumented workers here from many areas of the world. Hispanics are closer, so their numbers are higher.

    There are more Hispanics that will be against this who will find an alternative for their money and skip coming to Las Vegas. There are also rich Mexicans, and others from other countries who will resent this kind of action and not travel here to spend their high roller funds.

    This legislation will hurt more than do any good, especially since Americans are responsible for not cracking down on employers who break the law as well.

  2. What they are going to do is stop and check everyone for legal status .

  3. We need other legislation too. Since the feds make eligibility for many welfare programs up to state criteria, we must restrict applicants to American CITIZENS and exclude children of emigrants. This has been proposed at the federal level but is not yet law. We could save multi-millions out of state, local, non-profit budgets. And we need some means of restricting teachers, PTA, and others who think they are helping when they ignore their day jobs and spend "our" time with continual food drives to send groceries home with illegal students. We also need an update to statutes explaining applicant and benefit FRAUD by illegals and others. Can we get SOME enforcement on this?

  4. Fake and forged documents can lead to arrest and/or conviction and the arrest can generate an ICE hold for deportation. Perhaps we need the local cops to check those construction sites and other places where few speak English. I note there is nothing in the proposed legislation that singles out hispanics. There are European students who out-stay their visas--but at least they had visas to enter the country. How about expelling illegals and kids to save the interaction with ICE when possible and get them out of here pronto? Think of the wonderful positive impact on our schools, on our government budgets, on our tax rates, on our security, on our law enforcement / crime situations.

  5. Here is the legislation we need:

    If you are here illegally, leave. Now. It's that simple.

  6. Legal USA Citizen are becoming desperate in their attempt to control fraud in commerce and with immigration. Our society is steps away from employing technology to gain control and bring the USA back into balance. This may well be accomplished by the use of RFIDs or VeriChips.

    Here is an excerpt from Wired about the use of RFIDs as Verichip: Link-

    "Silverman also backed away from some of the Orwellian ideas floated by his cyberpunk predecessor. "I can tell you that " putting [the chips] into children and immigrants for identification purposes, or putting them into people, especially unwillingly, for financial transactions, has [not] been and never will be the intent of this company as long I'm the chairman and CEO," he says.

    Yet in 2004, Silverman told the Broward-Palm Beach New Times that the VeriChip could be used as a credit card in coming years. And in 2006, he went on Fox & Friends to promote the chipping of immigrant guest workers to track them and monitor their tax records.

    And ahead of the recent merger, VeriChip gave a presentation to investors hinting there would be some cross-pollination between the two sides of the business. It plans to "cross-sell its customer base" (.pdf) the Health Link service and vice-versa. So, Americans with implanted VeriChips will be encouraged to divulge their finances to PositiveID, while credit-monitoring customers will be marketed the health-record microchip."

    Furthermore, found on Details Here: (used for commerce/purchasing)

    "Then in November the tune changed, from a medical device back to a location and tracking device, as a Washington forum debated the benefits and hazards posed by a new way of identifying people with a microchip implanted under their skin to replace conventional paper identification. Privacy advocates argued the microchip could spell the end of anonymity in the United States, particularly if authorities began requiring people to wear them to meet conditions of parole, employment or border crossings. "

    Very few people ever thought the USA would ever be invaded and terrorized, yet we had the 9-11 attacks with the World Trade Center destroyed and a major hit on the Pentagon. The reality is that the RFIDs and VeriChips are here, cleared by the FDA and is even a part of the ACA, and no one blinks an eye! Guess the eyes have to be open, in order for them to blink!
    Blessings and Peace,

  7. Just as Nevada achieves a competitive advantage as a place to do business without harassment, we will arrange to harass businesses. The states which have laws like Arizona's have been plagued with police who have detained foreign business people. Nevada needs to decide whether it wants purity or profitable business and tourism. We can have one or the other, but not both.

  8. Here we have the arrogant stupidity of the CONservative movement and the idiots who support them on full display. It was one of their own fascist judges that issued Jan Brewer's (R-Musthavediedalongtimeago) scathing rebuke. Word up idiot CONservatives, immigration is under the sole discretion of the federal government. It's explicit in the Constitution you claim to love orgasmicly. Get it out of your idiot heads.

  9. What a waste of time and money. Ira Hansen must have looked at all the problems this state has and decided that imitating Arizona's immigration law is the best use of his "paid by the tax payer" time. Surely there must be at least one hungry and uneducated child in the state that could use his help. Perhaps there are a few families in need of medical attention or in need of some temporary financial relief? Maybe he could try working with his colleagues on attempting to improve the job market here in Nevada? Those projects must have been assigned to other, more creative people that do not need to rely on coat tail transportation as much.

  10. Chip all citizen's at birth, or on obtaining citizenship.

    We could have chip readers at the entrance of every private and public building, with a flashing red light and siren, every time an unchipped person passed through the scanner.

    There could be an armed uniformed police officer at each scanner so they could immediately detain the unchipped.

    Maybe we could have an automatic death penalty for the unchipped so they couldn't try to reenter the country. It would save alot of money.

    I don't suggest the chip be placed anywhere that would require one to bend over.

    Or maybe we could just have a tatoo on the foreheads of citizens reading "666". It is hard to remove tatoos.

    We could have a personal ID tatooed on our forearms as well. No need for any paper ID or licenses to be carried around. Just require re-registration every time someone moved.


  11. Peacelily, they already developed a nonremovable RFID paint, so that is also in the mix. I discovered this while doing my research. So the ID tatooed on the body can or would be accommodated with such RFID paint. Pretty amazing how much is being done under the People's radar!

    Blessings and Peace,

  12. We do NOT need immigration reform. We NEED to enforce legal immigration and prosecute illegals to the full extent of our laws. For any short cut in enforcement, we pay 10 times or more of the cost in unnecessary services, K-12, law enforcement for the illegals and their illegal anchor babies. About a million legal immigrants a year, many related to those already here....

  13. @Star - Thanks for the information. I was being sarcastic with my comment. Your information adds to some of the surreal thinking in our country.

    I still say if we stop enabling criminal acts with criminal behavior by Americans we would be much better off and probably save a ton of money.

    Clamp down on American employers hiring undocumented workers, and get serious in dealing with American drug use. The problems are within our borders by American citizen's. It is denial and an excuse to put the blame outside our borders.

    How can we blame others for taking advantage of a good deal? It is the American way.

    I don't care what ancestry, race, color, or religion citizens are. I have no fear of any group becoming a majority, only of individual misfits and sociopaths filled with fear and hate.

    It is in appreciating and sharing in the various ethnic cultural gifts that each brings to us that we become enriched as a nation.