Arizona has gotten a lot of attention for its new law on illegal immigration, but Missouri is also considering a bill to punish people who help illegal immigrants, KSHB reports. In fact, the bill's sponsor -- Rep. Mark Parkinson, who represents St. Charles -- plans to change his proposal so that it mirrors Arizona's. (Kris Kobach, a UMKC professor who's worked on several immigration cases, helped write part of Arizona's law.)
It's not likely that Parkinson's bill will go far this year because the legislature is so busy with budget issues, 41 reports. Here's a summary of the bill as it exists now.
A few people from the Kansas City area testified about the bill yesterday at the Capitol. One man with the American Patriots Coalition said the proposal would merely help enforce existing law. Some church volunteers worried they could be arrested for doing charity work that helps illegals. And a West Side businessman argued that it would lead to racial profiling for Hispanics who are full U.S. citizens. (Something that Kobach has denied.)
A man waits to be processed by Mexican authorities after being deported from the US in Nogales, Mexico, Wednesday, April 28, 2010. The Mexican government warned its citizens Tuesday to use extreme caution if visiting Arizona because of a tough new law that requires all immigrants and visitors to carry U.S.-issued documents or risk arrest. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)