Monday, June 21, 2010
The ferment at the state and local level on immigration reform continues. Josh Funk of the Associated Press reports that voters in the Nebraska city of Fremont on Monday approved a ban on hiring or renting property to undocumented immigrants. "The measure is likely to face a long and costly court battle, with the American Civil Liberties Union saying it will try to block it before it even goes into effect." Fremont, a town of about 25,000 people, has experienced a growth in its Hispanic population, in no small part due to the jobs at meatpacking plants. Despite a low unemployment rate, some residents worry fear that Americans are losing jobs to undocumented immigrants.
The Fremont measure is likely to end up in costly litigation, just like the previous ones in Hazelton, PA, Farmer's Branch, Texas, and Escondido, CA. It is unfortunate that the failure of Congress to enact comprehensive immigration reform has resulted in state and local governments seeking to take immigration law into their own hands.