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The truth behind Arizona SB 1070

The Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act (introduced as Arizona Senate Bill 1070 and thus often referred to simply as Arizona SB 1070) is a legislative Act in the U.S. state of Arizona that is the broadest and strictest anti-illegal immigration measure in recent U.S. history. It has received national and international attention and has spurred considerable controversy.

U.S. federal law requires certain aliens to register with the U.S. government, and to have registration documents in their possession at all times. The Arizona Act additionally makes it a state misdemeanor crime for an alien to be in Arizona without carrying the required documents, bars state or local officials or agencies from restricting enforcement of federal immigration laws, and cracks down on those sheltering, hiring and transporting illegal aliens. The paragraph on intent in the legislation says it embodies an “attrition through enforcement” doctrine.

Critics of the legislation say it encourages racial profiling, while supporters say the law prohibits the use of race as the sole basis for investigating immigration status. The law was modified by Arizona House Bill 2162 within a week of its signing with the goal of addressing some of these concerns. There have been protests in opposition to the law in over 70 U.S. cities, including boycotts and calls for boycotts of Arizona. Polling has found the law to have majority support in Arizona and nationwide. Passage of the measure has prompted other states to consider adopting similar legislation.

The Act was signed into law by Governor Jan Brewer on April 23, 2010. It was scheduled to go into effect on July 29, 2010, ninety days after the end of the legislative session. Legal challenges over its constitutionality and compliance with civil rights law were filed, including one by the United States Department of Justice, that also asked for an injunction against enforcement of the law. The day before the law was to take effect, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction that blocked the law’s most controversial provisions.People for a Profit.

Evidence has now emerged that two major supporters for Brewer’s campaign have direct ties to CCA – a strong hold in the private prison industry:

Chuck Coughlin: Former CCA Lobbyist Brewers Campaign Chairman/Policy Advisor/Lobbyist

Paul Senseman: Former CCA Lobbyist / current Communications Director for Brewer (his wife still lobbies for CCA)

In essence, CCA – being a company of shareholders – will earn more profits for each prisoner incarcerated. If this Bill had passed, this would have greatly increased the numbers of prisoners in the state of Arizona, thusly padding the pockets of the shareholders… and Coughlin… and Senseman… and who knows who else.

Additionally, CCA donated nearly $62,000 to her election campaign.

Think there is a little bit of influence going on here?

5 Comments »

  1. Excellent article! Both CCA and the GEO Group (the second-biggest private prison company) have contributed literally millions of dollars in campaign contributions, and millions more to lobbyists, to cotinually increase our rates of incarceration. They also work with a group called the American Legislative Exchange Council, which promotes conservative (i.e. corporate) model legislation, the same group behind the notorious 3-strikes laws and other pieces of legislation that have contributed to our country having far and away the highest rate of incarceration in the entire world.

    The private prison industry is an abomination, and a scourge on our society. For way more on this despicable industry, check out http://whyihatecca.blogspot.com

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