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Updated tweets on Legislative hearing to create Arizona-style immigration law

March 2, 2011

PhotoSen. Brad Ashford listens to testimony.

Tweets by Courtney Pitts, photo by Kyle Bruggeman

Hassebrook: Rural Nebraska is changing.

Hassebrook: For many of our rural communities, immigrants have helped revitalize the eroding population.

NU Regent Chuck Hassebrook next to testify. LB48 He works for Center of Rural Affairs.

McGill: Why don’t you pay more attention to immigration status? Schmader of OPD: We have few resources.

Todd Schmader from Omaha PD says the police do not currently check immigration status. They usually have no idea when dealing with crimes.

David Brown, immigration attorney, said he’s had cases where ICE has held ppl with “fraudulent” id only to find they were here legally.

Jones: What does an immigrant look like in a country where people are naturalized citizens or ancestors were immigrants?

Dr. Jeanette Jones, social action chair of delta sigma theta is now speaking. LB48 will increase profiling and more sundown towns in NE.

Dr. Jeanette Jones, social action chair of delta sigma theta is now speaking. LB48 will increase profiling and more sundown towns in NE

Lanford: Is there anyway to get reasonable suspicion in LB48 w/o including race or language? Piester: Yes. Race and language not sufficient.

Lanford asks about reasonable suspicion. Piester: It is more than a hunch, but less than probable cause.

Piester: I see no reason to subjugate Nebraska cities and officers to undergo such litigation. These opinions are not of his court, he adds.

Judge David Piester is speaking next. This bill would have to be defended in court. Police officers could be sued he says.

Michael Noland from Fremont talks about the the costs of defending laws like LB48 and the Fremont Ordinance.

James: We need to support victims of crimes despite status. Ppl who have suffered from these acts are not aliens.

James: I’ve had 2 immigrant women who have come forward to ask for help. One was questioned about her immigration status.

James: LB48 will strain the relationship between undocumented people and police. Cites case of a family afraid to cooperate in murder case.

S. A. Mora James, a civil rights attorney in LNK, is speaking opposed to LB48.

Now onto opponents of LB48 in the Nebraska legislature judiciary committee hearing.

Carl Schaffer: When you try to call ICE as a citizen you are put through Homeland Security then FOIA office & told to write a letter.

Barges: I applaud Sen. Janssen for having the guts to do this. Who’s going to stand up for Nebraskans?

Mike Barges is the next speaker. He says the bill mirrors federal law and we all have a stake in illegal immigration.

Kagen: Anchor babies born to illegal immigrants are given permanent residency. They suffer from drug-resistant strains of TB.

The judiciary committee had no questions for Smith. Next speaker is Doug Kagen of Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom.

Smith: LB48 will deter illegal immigration in Nebraska. It will protect Nebraska’s jobs and benefits.

Smith: If someone is pulled over and doesn’t speak English that would be a concern. How do they read our signs?

Susan Smith of the Nebraska Advisory Group is now speaking in favor of #LB48.

Freudenburg: The absence of a driver’s license would not be a reasonable suspicion alone.

Freudenburg tells Sen. Landford that the command of the English language would be a consideration for reasonable suspicion

Council: What database exists that would allow a police officer to check the status? E-verify only verifies lawful status.

Harr: Is a lack of identification part of reasonable suspicion? My concern is we’re going to be dragging children in to the police station.

Harr: What happens with a two-year-old or 12-year-old doesn’t have identification? Is being brown reasonable suspicion?

Harr asks Freudenburg, who is an attorney, if he thinks #LB48 is constitutional. He says yes.

Freudenburg: Bruning believes the issue of constitutionality is up in the air. He will defend it if there’s a suit.

John Freudenburg the bureau chief of the attorney general’s office is speaking now

Questioning of Janssen is over. Now hearing from proponents of the bill.

Janssen: The federal government needs to enforce immigration laws. They get paid more than us.

Janssen’s news conference may not starting any time soon. Committee still questioning impact on law forces and reasonable suspicion.

What’s reasonable suspicion? Janssen: Ex. could be an unlicensed vehicle, who knows where they are going, there are too many ppl in the car.

Ashford: What is in the laundry list of reasonable suspicions?

Sen. Brad Ashford: Under your bill if officers suspect someone they pick up for a traffic ticket is undocumented what would the officer do?

Harr: Tell me where it says it will be detained? I’m not trying to play gotcha.

Janssen: If a person is here illegally they will be detained and ICE will be notified. Will be added to the bill if it’s not in there now.

Harr: Points out that #LB48 doesn’t say a suspected illegal immigrant would be detained.

Harr: What happens to witnesses who come forward and there’s reasonable suspicion they’re undocumented?

Harr: If a woman came forward to report sexual assault & didn’t have documents, would she be detained? Janssen not sure.

Sen. Burke Harr is now questioning Sen. Janssen and his bill LB48.

Council: Law enforcement officials know where their financial resource should be going.

Council tells Janssen she’s troubled by Janssen’s statements about law enforcement officials “shirking their duties” b/c they oppose LB48.

Council: ICE focuses and prioritizes deportation efforts on illegal immigrants who commit serious crimes

Council: You (Janssen) do nothing to criminalize behavior of the employers who provide the primary reason ppl enter the country illegally.

Council: All of us are frustrated that the fed govt has failed to enact immigration reform but state doesn’t have authority.

Sen. Brenda Council: Provide me with one example where the gov. has issued sanctions that require the police to engage in racial profiling.

Janssen: The federal government should be paying for this, but we are stuck with the costs

Sen. Colby Coash: Where is our closest federal ICE facility? Janssen said he assumes Omaha. Does anyone know if this is correct?

Janssen says he’s not concerned about economic impact

McGill: Racial profiling does take place. There are people who will leave #Nebraska if (#LB48) passes. It will impact economy.

McGill: Our budget is already tight enough in Lincoln. If my best friend who is a latina is pulled over will she be asked for papers?

Sen. Amanda McGill asks Janssen about the costs of detaining illegal immigrants, cites story about Lincoln Police Chief.

Janssen: “Waiting for congress to act is unrealistic.

Janssen: As of 2006 the U.S. accepts more immigrants than any other nation.

Janssen: “If racial profiling occurs due to #LB48 we would know about it and stop it.

Janssen’s intro: LB48 would prohibit sanctuary cities and peace officers would determine status if reasonable suspicion.

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