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April 23, 2012

Arizona Tourism Numbers Up

"KTVK-TV reports that hotels reported Wednesday mixed numbers for January and February, but an overall strong March, propelled by spring breaks and the Cactus League baseball games. The announcement was made at a Valley Hotel and Resort Association gathering. Many hotel managers say the recession combined with the controversy over Arizona's immigration law kept visitors away the last few years. Rock-bottom room pricing helped keep the industry alive," the AP reports.

[FAIR comment: The trouble with the article below is that it deemphasizes the issue of the nation's economy and implies that a major reason for a tourism slump in the state was because of the immigration issue. See this ImmigrationReform.com posting for a recap on whether the boycott worked. Hint -no.]

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SB 1070 Heads to the Supreme Court This Week

"Arizona's law, known as SB 1070, expanded the powers of state police officers to ask about the immigration status of anyone they stop, and to hold those suspected of being illegal immigrants. The law was challenged by the Obama administration, and four of its most contentious provisions were suspended by federal courts. Courts later temporarily blocked other state laws, including the one in Georgia," the New York Times writes.

"Arizona's supporters say the state is well within its rights to enact a measure that they say would help, not hinder, federal agents. Dan Stein, the president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, a group that seeks reduced immigration, accused the Obama administration of trying to seize power from the states, calling its lawsuit 'a bald-faced usurpation of the American people's right to decide who comes and who goes in our country.' Mr. Stein's group assisted Arizona in writing its law."

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Immigration Issue May Decide French Presidential Race

"French President Nicolas Sarkozy vowed on Sunday to tighten border controls, control immigration and fight crime as he launched his campaign for the presidential election runoff following a record first-round vote for the far right," Reuters writes.

"It's about respect for our borders, the fight against outsourcing, immigration controls and valuing work and security," Sarkozy said. "In this world that changes so fast, people's concern about preserving their way of life is the central issue of this election."

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Washington Jury Selection Focuses on Immigration Views

"During two recent Franklin County murder trials, potential jurors were asked whether they believe immigrants are causing problems in America. It was the first time the question was posed to a jury pool in Benton-Franklin Superior Court as a way to ensure an unbiased jury is chosen, the Tri-City Herald reported," according to the Seattle Times.

"Prospective jurors in the murder trials of Gregorio Luna Luna and Jose Garcia-Morales were asked: 'Do you believe that immigrants are causing problems in America?'"

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Changes to HB 56 Include Questions Asked of Passengers

"Top Alabama Republicans said they plan to remove controversial language from an immigration bill that says police officers, under certain circumstances, can question and possibly detain car passengers they suspect of being illegal immigrants. Legislative leaders said they feared the section, which critics have called 'blatantly unconstitutional' would spark a new legal challenge that would prolong the enforcement of the state's immigration law," AL.com says.

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