Gov. Janet Napolitano ate a bowl of bills for breakfast Tuesday, May 8. She mostly vetoed minor technical stuff—we’re looking your way, tax breaks for commercial photographers—but there were some crunchy nuggets of illegal immigration in the mix.
Senate Bill 1236 would have banned the use of matricular cards handed out by the Mexican government. In her veto letter to Sen. President Tim Bee, Napolitano said the cards helped law enforcement and reduced fraud:
Without the ability to accept a consular ID card, Arizona’s law-enforcement officers may be unable to confirm the identities of foreign nationals who are stopped for any reason. If a foreign national is pulled over for a traffic violation and presents a consular ID, our law-enforcement officers must have the ability to use the ID to determine whether the person is wanted for other crimes. It makes no sense to hamstring out law-enforcement agencies efforts to know the criminal histories of foreign nationals they encounter.
And, as I stated in 2005, if foreign nationals are unable to use consular identification cards, they will be more likely to try to obtain forged documents that are accepted by state government, including social security cards or other documents that are accepted for the purpose of gaining access to state and local public benefits. The state is better served by having foreign nationals use identification that accurately identifies them as foreign nationals.
State Rep. Russell Pearce blasted Napolitano for supporting AMNESTY—which, yes, he put in all caps to make sure we wouldn’t miss it. Evidently, the word means anything Russell now wants it to mean.
Immigrants in this country legally have green cards, state driver's licenses, or passports/visas. They have no need of the consular ID, the only constituent for this card are illegal aliens.
SB1236 would have banned the use of consular identification cards in Arizona. Under federal law they are illegal due to large scale forgery and unreliability.
Congressional testimony by the FBI and Homeland Security Department officials on numerous occasions say the acceptance of this card poses one of the greatest threats to Homeland Security.
For illegal aliens consular cards are the easiest way for illegals to obtain official-looking ID’s. They are issued by the Mexican consulate, but do not certify immigration status.
“The issuance of these cards is tantamount to AMNESTY. They break our laws when they cross the border, repeat offenders when they undercut Americans for jobs and three-strikers when they use false identification to obtain services or cash the checks.” said Pearce.
Napolitano also shot down Sen. Jack Harper’s plan to create a state militia she could call out in times of emergency. In her veto letter, Napolitano said thanks, but she’s already got one:
Moreover, the governor already has the specific statutory right to call the unorganized militia into service of the state in times of emergency. See A.R.S. 26-124 (A).
Napolitano also killed bills that would have given scholarships to kids who graduate early from high school, expanded the membership of the Homeland Security Advisory Council, and let people sue the Arizona Department of Transportation in small-claims court. A complete—and growing!—list here.