Thursday, October 26, 2006

Are Border State Senators Helping or Hurting Their States?

Voters on immigration: Action, please; In Arizona, it's the most important issue among likely voters. But consensus on how to act is elusive. By Gail Russell Chaddock; The Christian Science Monitor 10/26

The Christian Science Monitor reports:

that while "much of America hit the pause button this fall on the flaming debate over illegal immigration, once it became clear Congress would not act before the election. But not Arizona." In a "state where the wave of border crossers is so great that it washes over every aspect of life, illegal immigration is a flash point in virtually every political race this fall. Moreover, there's a candidate for every view - from those saying 'send 'em back and bar the door' to those who'd provide a path for citizenship for some undocumented workers." Republican Randy Graf, who takes a "tough stance" on immigration, is "in an uphill battle to hold the Eighth Congressional District for the Republicans."

Outgoing Rep. Jim Kolbe "holds a more moderate view of immigration reform, as does Graf's Democratic challenger, Gabrielle Giffords. But Graf is banking that a majority of voters in this district feel as he does - and there are signs that Arizonans are, indeed, worked up over illegal immigration." But the state's "all-Republican
congressional delegation - some of whom are in unexpectedly close contests for reelection - is deeply divided on the immigration issue. Sharing Representative Kolbe's view are Rep. Jeff Flake, in the upscale Phoenix suburb of Mesa, and the very popular Sen. John McCain." On the other side "are Graf and Rep. J.D. Hayworth, who represents the also-upscale Fifth Congressional District in Scottsdale. They say their colleagues' plan amounts to amnesty for illegal immigrants and would reward people for breaking the law." Farrell Quinlan, a spokesman for the Arizona Chamber of Commerce in Phoenix, said, "Arizona is a microcosm of the nation when it comes to views on this issue. We're ground zero for the debate. Our economy is growing, and a lot of industries have grown to rely on that source of labor."

Read the complete article at the link above.

One of the areas I wanted to touch on has been the border and illegal alien issue affecting our country. Without presenting elements of the issues themselves, I have noted empirically how certain Senators have taken decidedly opposite views toward the issue from the general population of their state and the general assemblies. However, this is only observation, not supported research.

With that said I have a number of questions I am going to try and answer in the weeks to come. Here are a few.

  • Do senators from states that border Mexico have similar views as do the majority of state legislators?

  • If so, are senators from those states most affected by the illegal alien problem are actually hurting their own states infrastructure, security, and general well being by taking a contrary position?

  • How have those Senators from states most affected responded to border security and immigration legislation?

If I go with my gut feelings, I tend to think they are working against the interests of their states, but we will see.

No comments: