Tennessee Legislature enacts Immigration law, ACLU urged veto

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June 29, 2010

NASHVILLE, Tennessee: On Monday June 28, 2010 Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen signed into law a measure that will enact tougher immigration laws within the state, similar to those enacted in Arizona. This bill, SB 1070, includes allowing jailers to report any suspected prisoners who are in the country illegally to the U.S. Customs and Immigrations service or whose legal status cannot be confirmed within three days of arrest. While the law focuses on people who have already been arrested, opposed to Arizona's law which does not have that focus, it is not surprising after recent events making laws more strict in regards to immigration. A poll conducted by the Nashville Public Radio claimed that most citizens were ok with a law that made immigration laws stricter.[1] The ACLU had come out, urging the Governor to not sign the bill, stating that the law would encourage racial profiling and the disparity of minority groups. The head of the ACLU noted that local law enforcement officers would not know the specifics of national immigration law so this would lead to racial profiling by officers.[2] Immigrant advocates in the city had also urged the vetoing of the measure, saying that this would hurt the city more than help, turning people away. A vigil was held before the Governor signed the bill.[3]

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