The 2012 Legislative Session is notable for one thing in particular, the reluctance by lawmakers to address immigration reform. Immigration bills were bottled up in committee and floor debates were stopped.
Our Republican and Democratic insiders were basically on the same page as the Legislature, agreeing that lawmakers made the right choice by not addressing the issue.
Our readers heartily disagreed.
|Do you think Utah Lawmakers made the right choice by not addressing immigration reform or did they drop the ball?|
|Republican insiders||Democratic insiders||UtahPolicy.com readers|
|Lawmakers made the right choice||80%||88%||19%|
|Lawmakers dropped the ball||14%||6%||78%|
Some anonymous comments:
"Spines are only good in the off-season (non-election years)."
"If they did It could alienate some Latino voters for November, tying in Utah to Romney, but also it is a missed chance to show the union that Utah can lead on immigration reform."
"This is a federal government issue."
"A large number of House members wanted to vote on this issue. Unfortunately just short of a majority."
"Lockhart chickened out."
"Except for a few diehards, most member of the legislature and most members of the public got this out of their system last year. Illegal immigration is not an urgent issue for the vast majority of people in our state."
"The LDS church let it be known they did not want any immigration issues discussed this year. Let it be said, Let it be done."
"In spite of a couple of lawmakers wanting to use the issue as their springboard for higher office, the legislature was right to not revisit immigration this year."
"The federal government is not addressing immigration and it needs to be addressed, so our state should step up to the plate. By setting in place stronger laws against illegal activity of immigrants we don't have to 'send' them home, they will realize we only want citizens who uphold the laws of our state and they will leave on their own. That is not unsympathetic nor inhumane, it is right."
"No offense, but the more my fellow GOP'ers drone on and on about immigration the more juvenile we appear. We have serious issues and we need serious people to solve them and 'Immigration' - your 15 minutes are up."
"Lawmakers got what they wanted last year, so why bring it up again, and have ordinary citizens think about it, or worse yet speak about it, or worst of all have it effect their votes in November."
"Kudos to the LDS Church and the business community for leadership on this issue."
"I think it was good for the state, but I think they were worried more about the general election than using the time to make wise decisions. The 2013 session will surely see fireworks as the guest worker bill draws close to implementation."
"It was a good choice. Immigration reform legislation provokes divisive, mean-spirited, and bigoted comments that serve to alienate people of Hispanic background, both legal and illegal."
"The lawmakers are trying to keep a quiet session because it's an election year. Almost none of them are vulnerable and the GOP has more seats than they ever have. Yet they are still trying to maneuver for electoral advantage. Cowards."
"The legislature should have followed Governor Herbert's lead and passed a stronger e-verify bill. Taking away the incentive for people to come here illegally and get a job is an important part of solving the illegal immigration problem."
"If you say that the legislature should have addressed immigration, you must believe that the legislature would have made the changes that you would like made. What's the chance that the legislature would do anything differently than it did last year?"
"And just where would our Utah federal senators and representatives be actively participating to fix this mess??? Totally MIA."
"Speaker Lockhart deserves credit for keeping the body aligned on a sensible path for immigration reform. But let's be honest. Immigration reform must happen at the federal level. State action fails to address the root causes -- a porous border, insufficient supply of visas and a legal immigration system that doesn't work. We should be directing our energy towards the Utah Congressional Delegation, not the Utah State Legislature."
"They made the right choice. We're not getting anywhere in an election year and a year 'cooling-off' period will do them some good."
"Considering the inability of the legislature collectively to think rationally about the issue, they are better off staying away from it."
Respondents include -
Fred Adams, Stuart Adams, Jess Agraz, Scott Anderson, Patrice Arent, Bruce Baird, Tom Barberi, Heather Barney, Steve Barth, Jeff Bell, Tom Berggren, Mike Bertelsen, Ron Bigelow, Rob Bishop, Laura Black, Jim Bradley, Ralph Brown, Ken Bullock, Chris Bleak, Curt Bramble, Ralph Brown, Aaron Browning, Dave Buhler, Ken Bullock, Ric Cantrell, Maura Carabello, Rebecca Chavez-Houck, Kay Christensen, David Clark, Thomas Clay, Peter Corroon, Fred Cox, Lew Cramer, Gene Davis, Richard Davis, Brad Daw, Alan Dayton, Margaret Dayton, Mike Deaver, Brad, Dee, Joseph Demma, John Dougall, Randy Dryer, Donald Dunn, Becky Edwards, Scott Ericson, Jessica Fawson, Janice Fisher, Wendy Fisher, Lorie Fowlke, Ronald Fox, Jordan Garn, Luke Garrott, Dave Gessel, Natalie Gochnour, Robert Grow, Karen Hale, David Hansen, Neil Hansen, Joe Hatch, Jeff Hartley, Deidre Henderson, Lyle Hillyard, Randy Horiuchi, Ben Horsley, Bruce Hough, Scott Howell, Miriam Hyde, Allison Isom, Eric Jergensen, Mike Jerman, Roger Johnson, Michael Jolley, Gordon Jones, Leslie Jones, Kirk Jowers, Brian King, Scott Konopasek, Chris Kyler, Fred Lampropoulos, Douglas Larson, David Litvack, Larry Lunt, Matt Lyon, Ben McAdams, Gayle McKeachnie, JT Martin, Jason Mathis, Karen Mayne, Derek Miller, Rob Miller, Ethan Millard, Brett Millburn, Karen Morgan, Mike Mower, Holly Mullen, Wayne Niederhauser, Mike Noel, Ralph Okerlund, James Olsen, Val Oveson, Scott Parson, Kelly Patterson, Frank Pignanelli, Jason Powers, Joe Pyrah, Mike Reberg, Jill Remington Love, Lauren Richards, Holly Richardson, Robin Riggs, James Roberts, Luz Robles, Ross Romero, Don Savage, Bryan Schott, Jay Seegmiller, Patrick Shea, Randy Shumway, Soren Simonsen, Jeremy Slaughter, Carol Spackman-Moss, Howard Stephenson, Mike Styler, Todd Taylor, Juliette Tennert, Gary Thorup, Kevin Van Tassell, Royce Van Tassel, Michael Waddoups, Chuck Warren, Christine Watkins, LaVarr Webb, Todd Weiler, Alan West, Ted Wilson, Carl Wimmer, Mike Winder, Thomas Wright