NY Times profiles Utah AG Mark Shurtleff for unusual immigration stance
Brian Nicholson, El Observador de Utah
The New York Times highlighted Utah's unique approach to illegal immigration this week with a profile of Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff.
On points like health care, states' rights and abortion, Shurtleff takes a classic conservative stance. But while the loudest Republican voices advocate for cracking down on illegal immigrants, Shurtleff espouses a more merciful approach.
In this regard, Times writer Julia Preston called Shurtleff "the most prominent politician among an emerging generation of Republicans trying to stake out an alternative to restrictionist immigration laws modeled on Arizona's."
"It's only the loud, shrill voices we've been hearing," Shurtleff told the Times. "But I believe the majority of Republicans aren't this shrill anti-immigration, punish-'em-at-all-costs kind of mentality."
When Utah legislators moved to follow in Arizona's footsteps in 2010 by proposing laws requiring that state police enforce immigration laws, Shurtleff was vocal in his opposition. He helped draft the Utah Compact, a five-point statement of principles that stressed the importance of balancing law enforcement with keeping families together and acknowledging the economic role immigrants play.
The compact was key to the passage of a Utah law that enables illegal immigrants who pass a background check and pay a fine to obtain work permits. Immigrant advocates have said they believe the compact was also influential in the 2011 recall of Arizona Senate President Russell Pearce, author of the state's hard-line immigration laws.
Hoping to spread the word about Utah's approach, Shurtleff has spoken at law-enforcement conventions, organized regional strategy sessions and counseled lawmakers from other states. He even took on Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, a leading restrictionist organization, in a heated talk radio debate.
- Riverton sees 550-acre LDS Church property...
- About Utah: Selling bikes the new-fashioned way
- Should Utah have 'blended sentences' for teen...
- 2016 Sterling Scholar candidates
- Police ID man who barricaded himself in motor...
- Paradigm shift: Fewer Utah juvenile offenders...
- Teen in critical condition after slamming...
- Ex-social worker to plead guilty to sex with...
- Supporters of Oregon occupier honor... 54
- Riverton sees 550-acre LDS Church... 36
- Feds say Orem man duped hundreds of... 28
- Meagan Grunwald won't get a new trial... 25
- Paradigm shift: Fewer Utah juvenile... 18
- Woman killed by mixer at Sandy grocery... 16
- Video involving officer whose ear was... 15
- Should Utah have 'blended sentences'... 11