Working towards sensible immigration reforM For Our State and Country
AZEIR's Media Philosophy
Just The Facts
"A salient characteristic of the current debate on U.S. immigration policy is the high ratio of hot air to data."
Dr. Douglas Massey
Co-director, Mexican Migration Project
Bad public policy comes from bad data and there is ample evidence that more often than not, bad information is driving the current debate on immigration. As Dr. Massey so eloquently states, it is often "hot air" that is in plentiful supply, not facts. AZEIR tries very ahrd to have its facts straight and ensures to the greatest extent possible that it can substantiate its statements with empirical research and first-hand knowledge.
Businesses rely on solid data when making important decisions and we strive to do the same here.
A bipartisan group of Senators introduced a bill to overhaul immigration laws. Co-Chair for the Real Arizona Coalition, Lisa Urias, James Garcia, owner of Creative Vistas Media, and Executive Director of Arizona Employers for Immigration Reform and Member of the Real Arizona Coalition Leadership, Todd Landfried, discuss the legislation.
ASU/KAET 8 Immigration Reform Forum
Former U.S. Senator John Kyl moderates a panel discussion exploring the complexities surrounding immigration reform, including its timing, feasibility and potential scope. Border security, the path to citizenship, and visas for individuals working in STEM-related fields are among the topics to be addressed. This forum is part of Arizona State University’s The Challenges Before Us project, created to tackle some of the many challenges facing society today.
S.A.N.E. Platform for Federal Immigration Reform
Editorial and news coverage of the S.A.N.E. platform for federal immigration reform has been ver positive. Below are select links to some of the dozens of stories about the platform that have been published since it's release on December 5, 2012.
Press Release: AZEIR Statement On Supreme Court Ruling on SB1070
June 24, 2012 - The Supreme Court’s ruling on SB 1070 is a significant win for those demanding sensible immigration reform. Today’s strong 5-3 Supreme Court opinion that three of the four sections of SB1070 challenged by the U.S. Dept. of Justice are unconstitutional should put an end to the argument that states can insert themselves in federal immigration enforcement efforts. The Court rejected Arizona’s argument SB1070 simply mirrors federal law (§3), can institute state criminal penalties where no federal penalties exist (§5(C)) or arrest someone without a warrant whom the officer has probable cause to believe has committed a deportable crime (§6). We believe these are the correct decisions. [Read more] [PDF]
AZEIR Executive Director Address Unitarian Universalist Church General Assembly at Phoenix Meeting
On Thursday, June 21, 2012, AZEIR Executive Director Todd Landfried participated in a panel discussion on immigration at the 2012 General Assembly Meeting of the Unitarian Universalist Church at the Phoenix Convention Center. His talk addressed the myths and distortions used to justify state-level immigration laws. The slide show can be seen by clicking on the image below.
Arizona Accord - Five Principles For Sensible Reform
Jan. 24, 2012 - Endorsed by a broad range of business, faith-based and civic groups, the Arizona Accord, with its five principles on immigration reform, was unveiled today in a signing ceremony held in the historic Arizona State Capitol in Phoenix.
The Arizona Accord provides a broad set of guiding principles on issues related to immigration which can act as a foundation in all efforts – government and private – to find solutions to the complicated questions surrounding the federal immigration system.
The five principles found in the Arizona Accord deal with finding federal solutions; respecting and supporting an appropriate role for law enforcement; recognizing the importance of protecting families in order to sustain our communities; supporting a free-market economy that acknowledges the contribution immigrants bring to our nation’s workforce and embracing the culture of inclusion by welcoming people of goodwill to our state and country.
"Everyone needs to understand the Accord isn't a law and it isn't intended to become one," said Richard Usher, Board member and co-founder of Arizona Employers for Immigration Reform. "These are simple and straightforward principles those involved in solving the immigration problem can follow as they create and implement sensible solutions. We’ve seen the problems doing it the wrong way creates and our hope is that following these five principles allows us to quickly and effectively address the immigration problem in ways that secures the border while facilitating and promoting legal economic growth."
Show Your Support for the Arizona Accord
The citizens of Arizona are welcome to express their support for these principles by going online and signing the Arizona Accord for themselves. The Arizona Accord web site can be found at: www.azaccord.com
AZEIR Discusses SCOTUS Opinion Impacts on Yuma's KAWC-FM
Yuma's Public Radio Station KAWC-FM's "Arizona Edition" broadcast a special report on the U.S. Supreme Court's opinion on Arizona's controversial immigration law SB 1070. AZEIR Executive Director Todd Landfried was interviewed by KAWC's Kim Johnson as part of this program and described the business perspective on the ruling. [Download]
Statement on President Obama's Immigration Policy
June 15, 2012: President Obama’s immigration order is a reaction to a Congress that has for years refused to act in a proactive and positive manner on the DREAM Act or on sensible immigration reform. Today’s order does not attempt to address the full immigration problem, but it is a step, albeit temporary one, in the right direction.
Since taking office, the Obama administration has focused its immigration efforts almost exclusively on border security. It has provided increased levels of staff, technology and investments to the point that arrests and deportations are at historically high levels. The Pew Hispanic Center recently reported that net unauthorized migration into the U.S. is now near zero. These are exactly the types of efforts and results anti-immigration groups have been clamoring for, for years.
With an arguably more secure border, a next step must be dealing with those who are already here. Today’s policy change will give the country an opportunity to see if the benefits of the DREAM Act and status legalization can come true. We’ve tried the enforcement only approach for years and we know it doesn’t work and it’s about time we tried a more sensible approach. Do we wish this could have been done through Congress? Of course, but it wasn’t. They chose not to act and we’re pleased the President has.
No one should be surprised by claims that election year politics are behind the President’s announcement. Whether that is true or not, bringing young, entrepreneurial students who know no other country than this and who all studies show are likely to be productive and contributing members of our society is a welcome change to the rhetoric of divisive and damaging state-level immigration laws. While it is by no means a permanent fix, at least it’s a start, which is more than anything we’ve seen from Congress.
Video segment of AZEIR Executive Todd Landfried's interview on CCTV where he takes on FAIR in discussing SB1070 and its impacts on the state's people and businesses.
AZEIR Attorney David Selden appears on Newsmaker Sunday to discuss the Supreme Court Hearing on SB 1070
AZEIR Spokesman Todd Landfried Speaking In Support of the Real Arizona Coalition
AZEIR Files Amicus Curiae Brief in SCOTUS Opposing SB1070
Through the leadership of AZEIR and the courage of five Arizona business organizations, an amicus curiae "Friend of the Court" brief was filed on Monday, March 26, 2012 with the U.S. Supreme Court in opposition of SB1070. The brief states the law violates the Dormant Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution, interferes with interstate and foreign commerce and the justifications and purported benefits to the State are "illusory." Citing Supreme Court rulings from previous cases and statisticsfrom economic studies and state agencies, the brief makes a compelling argument why SB1070 is bad for Arizona's businesses and the economy.
Organizations signing on to the brief include Arizona Employers for Immigration Reform, American Subcontractors Association of Arizona, Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Farmers Investment Company, and Hill & Usher, LLC. [PDF] [Press Release]
SB1517: A Reasonable Correction to LAWA
On Monday, January 30, 2012, nine Arizona Senators sponsored the first real improvement to the Legal Arizona Workers Act of 2007 with the introduction of SB1517. This long-overdue, yet simple, change to the law adds a "safe harbor" provision to the law providing business owners complete legal protection against lawsuit or charges of hiring undocumented workers provided they follow all of the rules of law. Introduced by Senator Jerry Lewis (R-18), SB1517 brings the Arizona statute into alignment with the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Chamber of Commerce of the United States vs. Whiting, which said LAWA provided business users of E-Verify a "safe harbor" against federal violation, but it did not provide it in state law. By making a simple change in the existing statute, businesses who now follow the rule of law to the letter and who are not involved in other conspiracy or knowingly aware of fraud will not be under threat of loss of their business license.
"This is good and fair--and about time!"
Nan Walden, V.P. and Counsel of Farmers Investment Company
"To the sponsors and co-sponsors thank you for this simple bill."
Joe Sigg, Arizona Farm Bureau
"Businesses who follow government regulations to the letter should not live under threat of loss of business licenses. This fix is a no-brainer and is long overdue."
David Selden, Immigration Law Attorney, The Cavanagh Law Firm
The change will give employers a greater incentive to utilize the E-Verify Program because doing so will alleviate the risk that they could be subject to prosecution for employing persons that the E-Verify system confirms are authorized to work in this country.
By encouraging more employers to use E-Verify by creating this safe harbor, the change will promote higher levels of immigration compliance.
Bill sponsors: Senator Lewis; Representative Ash: Senators Barto, Crandall, Driggs, McComish, Nelson, Reagan, Yarbrough
Arizona has come a long way in the year since the year of SB 1070. We saw the defeat of five immigration bills in the state Senate, 26 of 30 states rejected SB 1070-style lawas and people started discussing alternative solutions. In a column for the Arizona Republic, AZEIR spokesman Todd Landfried talks about what a difference a year makes. More...
AZEIR Statement on the recall of Russell Pearce [PDF]
On Tuesday November 8th, voters in Arizona Legislative District 18 changed their state senator. In a special recall election over 12,000 Republican, Independent and Democratic voters chose Republican Jerry Lewis to replace Russell Pearce. While many see this election as a referendum on immigration policy alone, in reality it was also a referendum on style, substance and the failure to address other critical issues important to our state. More...
Media Coverage of AZEIR
As one of the oldest business-centered immigration groups in the country, the media have come to recognize AZEIR's efforts and expertise in dealing with and addressing state-based immigration reform. Below are links to recent and relevant coverage of AZEIR in both the print and electronic media.
Press Coverage (Print)
Empresarios y México cargan contra la ley migratoria de Arizona - March 26, 2012
El documentado enviado por los empresarios, que incluye al grupo Empleadores de Arizona por una Reforma Migratoria (AZEIR), American Subcontractors Association of Arizona y Hill & Usher, indica que los firmantes apoyan la demanda presentada por el Departamento de Justicia en contra de la completa implementación de la SB1070 que será discutida el próximo mes por el Supremo.
Keep Immigration Momentum Going - December 19, 2011
AZEIR spokesman Todd Landfried writes about the changes in tone and direction in the immigration debate in the year after SB 1070.
Let's Find Real Immigration Solutions - August 22, 2011
AZEIR Spokesman Todd Landfried describes how Arizona has been at the forefront of the national- and state-level immigration debate for several years and it's time for an open and honest assessment of whether what we're doing actually works.
Peña's Guest-Worker Bill Draws Praise, Criticism - March 30, 2011
Proposed legislation that would establish a state-run guest-worker program would legally satisfy the state’s appetite for cheap labor but not grant amnesty to people already in Texas illegally, according to the bill’s author.
SB1070 Storm Warnings Ignored - April 30, 2010 AZEIR President Sheridan Bailey discusses the problems with SB1070 and how the business community attempted to warn Arizona's legislators about the likely ramifications of passage with Arizona Republic columnist E. J. Montini.
KFLX - The Mitch & Joe Show, September 19, 2011 [Audio]
KJZZ - Here and Now with Steve Goldstein, August 24, 2011 [Audio]
KTAR - The Jay Lawrence Show: Saturday, August 19, 2011 - 7-8PM [Podcast]
KUER - Hinckley Institute of Politics: Economics and Public Safety Implications of SB 1070 [Audio]
KCPW - a panel discussion called Immigration Policy, the Arizona Experience explores Arizona’s experience with SB 1070, a controversial anti illegal-immigration law in that state, and HB 70, a similar Utah bill that just passed out of the Utah House of Representatives.[Audio]
Press Coverage (Video)
Univision : Empresarios de Arizona contra la SB1070
Arizonans highlight economic cost of tough immigration law
February 10, 2011 - KSL TV, Salt Lake City: AZEIR spokesman Todd Landfried said Thursday that they are costing his state hundreds of millions of dollars.
What Are The Economic Impacts of Arizona's Immigration Laws?
July 22, 2010 - CNN's Thelma Gutierrez interviews AZEIR spokesman Todd Landfried and sees how neighborhood businesses are affected when customers disappear.
AZEIR President Sheridan Bailey on MSNBC's "Your Business."
July 10, 2010 - The state of Arizona has become the center of the illegal immigration debate. SB1070, a controversial piece of legislation requiring stricter enforcement of anti-immigration laws, is expected to go into effect in Arizona on July 29th, and small business owners are bracing for the changes that may come with it. AZEIR President Sheridan Bailey was interviewed for this story and appears throughout the segment.
AZEIR Runs TV and Radio Spots Calling for Immigration Reform on KAET's "Horizon"
May 10, 2007 - AZEIR President Sheridan Bailey appears on KAET's nightly news program "Horizon" to discuss a series of TV and radio ads running in Arizona calling for Congress to pass sensible immigration reforms.