Utah proposal calls for illegal immigrants to obtain work permits, undergo criminal background checks

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  • Considering Stockton, UT
    Dec. 29, 2010 12:48 a.m.

    Dozens of comments, many of them very thoughtful and well written. But the DesNew editorial staff tags as "editors' choice" two comments in favor of amnesty.

    And the DesNews wonders why it is in financial trouble.

    They are grossly out of touch with their target readership.

    Somehow I suspect this comment never makes it past the censors.

  • Considering Stockton, UT
    Dec. 29, 2010 12:37 a.m.

    Why is it that the same crowd who scream that immigration is a federal matter anytime we talk of local enforcement then turn around and even suggest something like a worker permit for illegal aliens?

    Local police routinely help enforce federal laws including in areas like drugs, guns, environmental rules, anti-discrimination, and so on. Indeed, State laws are often crafted that mirror federal law in these areas specifically so local courts and prisons can handle violations. But helping to enforce immigration laws is a bad thing?

    On the other hand, adopting a worker permit that essentially gives local amnesty or sanctuary to violators of federal laws is now a good thing?

    Let me guess those who propose such nonsense are the same kind of people who get very exercised if the State legislature attempts to protect enumerated constitutional rights against excessive federal meddling with laws such as the utah made firearms act.

    More liberal logic. Protecting the rights of Utah's citizens to defend themselves is bad. But helping illegal aliens thwart immigration laws is noble.

  • Hawkeye79 Iowa City, IA
    Dec. 28, 2010 3:59 p.m.

    This proposal still lacks the administration of medical testing and a federal investigation into terrorist ties. It would be unwise to create an incentive for (or even complacently allow) people to come here without being screened for deadly diseases. The same goes for screenings for terrorist affiliations (which do not necessarily show up on criminal background checks and require federal intervention, which this bill tries to avoid).

  • Ajax Mapleton, UT
    Dec. 28, 2010 1:35 p.m.

    Why the Sandstrom crowd believes that a pound of flesh is the answer to the problem of undocumented immigration is puzzling. In my view their idea of the law and their affected altruism are a sham and a con highly detrimental to our state and our people.

    The Robles/Mero proposal is all that the Sandstrom bill isn't: a wise and honest assessment of the situation, offering prospects of a genuine solution.

  • Tom Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Dec. 28, 2010 9:20 a.m.

    The Federal law that Arizona wants to enforce was written in 1940, not a good time in American history for our treatment of individuals who happen to of been different from us. The law has not been enforced since 1967. There are many old laws on the books that we no longer enforce because our country has out grown them. To say things like the law is the law and what part of illegal don't you understand is really disingenuous. We need to be willing to look at this problem realistically. This bill is a good start. The part about illegal that I don't understand is why when I drive to work every day and exceed the speed limit am I not illegal. Why when my neighbor barbeque's on the balcony of her apartment is she not illegal. Why when my other neighbor tries a little to hard to get the best deal on his tax return isn't he illegal. There are those who would like to use the 1940 law to round up our present day Japaneses, and put them in camps but I don't believe that is what most want to do.

  • MyChildrensKeeper Kearns, UT
    Dec. 24, 2010 4:28 a.m.

    It's incomprehensible the lengths that the state is allowing for illegal aliens and Mexican nationals to confront and challenge the law of my country they are not a part of. Has Utah secretly surrendered its territory to Mexico? If we were on the coast with a port of entry these actions by Mexican nationals would be called terrorism.

    Instead of wasting millions of dollars to supply business of Utah with cheap illegal labor to force the american workers of a job and livable pay, build the deportation camps and send them back to Mexico so we can get on with being a Untied States of America.

    Stop trying to violate state and federal laws and start enforcing them. We do not want the illegal mexicans as our financial dependents and looters of America in Utah anymore. Arizona, here we come, help is on the way. Stop hiding illegal aliens in this state nag get some spine and backbone to listen to your constituents. Just because the illegals were used as head count for political and education funding does not alter the fact they are criminal invaders occupying the territory of Utah.
    They are not constituents nor americans.

  • CJ Murray, UT
    Dec. 19, 2010 7:01 p.m.

    To "another perspective",

    This is a wonderful idea? Have you been watching Shirley Temple movies all day? Are there any other laws you want to issue permits to break? The logic here is so moronic that it is hard to think anyone who graduated from junior high could actually believe this makes sense on any level. This stupid idea sends out a message to the rest of the Mexicans that are left down there to come on up to Utah and get a permit to break the law. Did you actually think about this for longer than one minute?

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Dec. 19, 2010 1:05 p.m.

    re Viva la Migra | 9:24 a.m. Dec. 1, 2010

    You need to re-examine your logic : or rather the lack thereof.

    This law doesn't conflict with federal law or the US Constitution in the least (unlike the Arizona law). If the federal government wants to go after the undocumented they remain free to do so.

    This law will impact only Utah authorities. Under this law Utah authorities are to not interfere with the "federally undocumented" or their employeers so long as these "federally undocumented" have Utah documents.

    There is nothing in the US constitution or US law which says states must enforce federal immigration law.

  • Another Perspective Bountiful, UT
    Dec. 19, 2010 12:56 p.m.

    This is a wonderful idea and it is overdue. My son has a friend who we didn't know is undocumented. This friend grew up here. He didn't know he was undocumented until he started trying to get jobs and then found out.

    Given that congress didn't pass the dream act, this is a welcome step in the right direction.

    Cudos to visionaries in Utah.

  • tenx Santa Clara, UT
    Dec. 3, 2010 8:19 p.m.

    How about a permit called a LEGAL IMMIGRATION VISA. Stand in line at the US Embassy in your home country. Problem solved.

  • MCFergy Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2010 1:57 p.m.

    @ Ron Hilton; Expanded guest worker program, you suggest. Do you realize that beyond legal immigrant applicants, Congressional auto-pilot immigration legislation admits approximately 1.2 million immigrants into the U.S. annually, whether our industrial requirements are over or under loaded?

    These numbers are not adjusted nor have they been lowered for years, only increased. Just for perspective; that is roughly half the population of Utah entering the U.S. per year and that does not included the legal guest worker programs, foreign student visas, etc., then one can add the illegal alien flow, which seems to have stalled over the past year and a half.

  • MCFergy Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2010 1:05 p.m.

    Just how naïve do Senator Robles and Paul Mero believe Utahans are? Lets see, if one is here illegally and they are allow to be subject to a background check then jump to the front of the immigration line and work in Utah without any recourse of deportation, that constitutes clemency or amnesty for breaking a federal immigration statute.

    Ms. Robles and Mr. Mero must have the same learning disability as those who believed ObamaCare would save money or at the very least be deficit neutral. November 2nd negates any notion of the Robles bill and champions the Sandstrom bill.

  • TW in TX League City, TX
    Dec. 2, 2010 11:49 a.m.

    All of the Pharisees out there need to get off their Rameumptom. Very few of you, if any, understand this on a personal level. As someone said earlier, it is so easy to sit at your computer and revile against someone you don't know--"Deport them all!" you say. Yet most of you continue to drive over the speed limit, overestimate on your taxes, leave work early and count the whole day, etc. You call them hypocrites? How about next time you get caught speeding, they take away your license permanently as well as your car? Forget driving school, paying the ticket, or community service. Take that you unlawful illegal drivers! Yep, you sound just as ridiculous...

  • patriotandmore Spanish Fork, UT
    Dec. 2, 2010 7:15 a.m.

    This is just a sugar-coated amnesty program. Illegal aliens should not be allowed to reside in the U. S. period. If they want a work-permit, there is already a process for that. Adopt Sandstrom's law and get this controversy over with. NO AMNESTY or special privileges for illegals.

  • Neanderthal Schenectady, NY
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:52 p.m.


    @if you can find them to give them work permits and background checks, you can find them for deportation..."

    "...too many people go to all the work, time and money to come here the right way. the ones who come here the wrong way should not be rewarded for it."

    "it also encourages more of the same behavior."

    Three absolutely excellent points!!! Robles, are you listening?

  • cc0623 Roosevelt, utah
    Dec. 1, 2010 8:38 p.m.

    Robles legislature is just as deceiving as the Dream Act. Both are backdoor Amnesty for illegal aliens. Please call our representatives and let them know Utahns do not want illegals in this state.

  • wrz Schenectady, NY
    Dec. 1, 2010 6:48 p.m.


    "This would make the illegal problem more manageable and allow law enforcement the ability to distinguish between those maliciously attempting to circumvent the law and those who have lawful intent."

    Too funny! Crossing the border illegally IS circumventing the law. There is no 'lawful intent' in crossing the border illegally.

    "It would save our state and country a lot of expense to legalize this workforce, rather than go through the costly and overtly destructive effort of extracting them from the population."

    If the laws of the land were enforced it would not be that expensive to extract illegals and send them home. Enforce E-verify and illegals will extract themselves and go home. No jobs and they will leave. And, incidentally, we have 15 million Americans that are unemployed. If illegals who hold jobs were to leave our unemployment rate would return to normal levels and our economy would spring to life.

    "Give the illegal immigrants of the state a legal course of action."

    They have a legal course of action. Leave the country, fill out the appropriate paperwork, then get in line... just like others who would like to come to this country.

  • mickeymouse Yakima, WA
    Dec. 1, 2010 6:14 p.m.

    well of course these two think this bill is a good idea. they only think in terms of race. they don't think in terms of right and wrong. your state is making a big mistake with this idea, it's not a good one. if you can find them to give them work permits and background checks, you can find them for deportation and that is the right thing to do. too many people go to all the work, time and money to come here the right way. the ones who come here the wrong way should not be rewarded for it. it also encourages more of the same behavior. i don't care if people come here legally at all.thats great, but i don't want people sneaking in, screaming about all their supposed rights, not giving a darn about responsibility and breaking the law.

  • Third try screen name Mapleton, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 6:04 p.m.

    This is wrong for the same reason the DPC is wrong: States do not determine immigration status.
    You can't preempt federal authority to grant any modicum of legal status.
    The litmus test is whether or not your recognition of them is valid in other states.
    But it would allow them to work for slave wages, buy our used cars, rent our rooms and fill our pews...which explains all the support for this idea.

  • Alfred Schenectady, NY
    Dec. 1, 2010 5:55 p.m.

    @ouisc 8:07 p.m.

    "This bill does nothing to deter illegal immigration-"

    It was not intended to deter illegal immigration. It is intended to be one small, innocuous step toward eventual amnesty for illegals.

    Proponents of the Robles bill and those who support amnesty for illegals know full well that they must approach the issue carefully doing so in multiple small steps so as to avoid awakening those who oppose illegal immigration.

    I say, reject this bill and support the Sandstrom bill. I'm calling my senators and representatives today.

    Dec. 1, 2010 5:42 p.m.

    It does no good to collect tax money from illegal immigrants, then turn around and pay twice that much in unemployment insurance to Americans out of work because of their presence.

  • Old Timer the boonies, mexico
    Dec. 1, 2010 5:36 p.m.

    Would some of you please contact your state legislators and ask them for the definition of "ILLEGAL"! Apparently these highly educated reps no "SAVVY. What a con job!

  • 1FedUpAmerican American Fork, Utah
    Dec. 1, 2010 4:19 p.m.

    The only question that seems to not be addressed here is will these illegal aliens working American jobs be required to file state and federal tax returns?

  • Tami Herriman, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 4:06 p.m.

    So, this bill gives people "permission" to break the law? No way!

  • TRUTH Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 4:04 p.m.

    cool....I am going to start a bus service from Mexico City to SLC....inviting all who want to live and work in SLC to ride for free and fund it with federal SBA money!....think of all the displaced workers we can squeeze out of their current jobs!

    More white unemployed.....I love amnesty!

  • Independent Henderson, NV
    Dec. 1, 2010 3:48 p.m.

    All this proposal does is to step in and fulfill the role of the federal bureacracy. There is no reason why most of the illegal immigrants in this country shouldn't have been able to come and stay here legally. The only thing holding them up is the fact that the federal government cannot do its job and process their paperwork fairly, accurately, and in a timely fashion. If state governments want to step in defend these people from the evils of a bloated, inefficient federal bureacracy, I say go right ahead. My fellow conservatives need to pull their heads out of the sand and realize that the problem is not illegal immigrants. The problem is the government that made them illegal in the first place. Why are we so quick to demonize the BLM and the IRS, but suddenly the federal government is competent, good, right, and just when it comes to INS? Wake up. Are you really going to trust a federal bureacrat to tell you who is and who isn't a legal immigrant? They've proven their ineptness. Don't take it out on the victim.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 3:04 p.m.

    It is crazy to pass out pieces of paper to pretend illegal activity is not really illegal.

    Maybe we should give bank robbers "unauthorized withdrawal slips" to use in their undocumented work life.

    Drug dealers might want to use certificates designating then "unauthorized pharmacists" so they won't be hassled on the job. After all, they are just trying to feed their families.

    No amnesty for criminals. Not now, not ever! Shame on these politicians for even suggesting this scheme!

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Dec. 1, 2010 1:01 p.m.

    Didn't the Utah compact say that immigration is a Federal Issue, and the Federal Government should take care of it?

    Isn't this law equal to Legalizing Marijuana? The state can claim its legal, and won't do anything about it. However, it is still against federal law.

    The Utah Compact is quite clear when it says "Immigration is a federal policy issue between the U.S. government and other countries not Utah and other countries." This bill is in direct violation of the Utah Compact. The AZ law was more in line with the Utah Compact because the bulk of it was just adopting Federal Law, whatever it is or would become.

    Nothing outside of looking for a humane way of shipping illegal immigrants back to their home countries should be looked at.

  • Tom Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 1:01 p.m.

    The Oboma administration is deporting more undocumented people than any other administration in U.S. history. About 400,000 individualizes a year. ICE say they are maxed out. If we continue the current policy and there are 11,000,000 undocumented people it will take us 28 year to deport them all. But since we have jobs for these individuals that they do not have at home they will continue to come. Deportation is not going to solve the problem. The other idea is to make life miserable enough they will leave. That is not working because they are hearing from relatives back home that as bad as it may get here, it is better than going home. We can continue to do the impossible, makeing 2,000 miles of border uncrossable. These ineffective solutions may get people elected and raise peoples blood pressure, or we can recognize the good these people contribute to our society and accept that we do not have a monopoly on being human and that other people have value. Then work for solutions that can really address this issue.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 12:36 p.m.


    Laws of the land prohibiting bank robbers from robbing banks are inappropriate. After all, they're only trying to seek a better life!

  • mammalou Somewhere in the USA, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 12:33 p.m.

    So let me get this straight. You want to reward people for breaking the law and use tax payer monies to create a system for the to get a "permit" which is still against the federal law, but we will look the other way?

    There is a system for this. It's called "LEGAL IMMIGRATION". To reward those already here, and those that still want to come is crazy.

    I would like approximately $100,000.00 from my neighborhood bank. How about issuing me a permit to go and take this money, as long as I get on the books and tell you I'm going to go steal it.

    What is this country coming to....

  • Jazz Bass Man Wellsville, Utah
    Dec. 1, 2010 12:24 p.m.

    10% unemployement in this country, the worst economy since the great depression, and my teenagers can't find entry level jobs, and the best idea these fools can come up with is to attract more uneducated "undocumented workers" from the third world to live and work here legally, and to further suck our ecomony dry with the burden of their anchor babies.

    Can someone say "government corruption"?

  • CWEB Orem, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 12:21 p.m.

    So all of you who are AGAINST this are basically admitting, you don't care "why" someone is here illegally, it isn't that you are concerned with the crimes being committed--you really are against anyone trying to live a better life. And sometimes the Laws of our land our not appropriate...and you can't see that. Too bad.

    I'm for helping those who are keeping our laws...

    oh yeah, you think our current immigrations mess is

    fair to those who want to come...don't throw the "come legally" at me... because under current law--it is all but impossible. Have some compassion people.

  • Hellooo Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 11:22 a.m.

    This is a good start, but it needs more teeth in it to insure compliance by individuals and businesses. Of course, the state has the power to regulate the work and residency requirements within its boundaries and this permitting process does not usurp in any way the federal governments sole responsibility for "naturalization". Permitting is a revenue raising and monitoring process and that is all.

  • Fitness Freak Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 11:10 a.m.

    I wonder: does this bill only apply to hispanic illegal aliens or can my 100k friends from Indonesia qualify also? I could invite 100k good workers from the African continent who would make the hispanic workers (and all of us)seem WAY OVERPAID.

    Did you have to have snuck across the southern desert to qualify, or can you just come by ship?

    Is there a requirement that the "applicants" MUST speak Spanish only?

    Now that I think about it, why have ANY IMMIGRATION RULES at all?
    We should all just get used to working for $1.10 per hour and open the borders to any and all who want to come!
    I'm not sure who's going to pay for their medical, education, food stamps, etc., but I'm sure the Obama administration will "work it out".

  • Reggie Centerville, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 11:02 a.m.

    This is not about Americans or what we the citizens want. It's about public policy, big business, political correctness and everything else that's evil. We're the frog in the hot pot of water that gets hotter and hotter til it reaches a boiling point. Shame on our legislators for even considering this bill.

  • van Saratoga Springs, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:54 a.m.

    This is at least a bill that has some sense to it.

    Truth is. The Sandstrom bill is a police state bill. He has an kind of a wierd hatred of illegals. His bill has no common sense. No problem solving and no forgivness.

    The Mormon Church does not support Sandstroms bill.
    The Catholic Church does not support Sandstroms bill.

    Sean Hannity Zombies love Sandstroms bill.

    Deporting thousands of people from utah economy is not good...its very bad for all of us.

    Sandstrom should learn forgivness. He would be alot more happy if he would focus on fixing a problem instead of creating more of a problem.

    Robles, good job. Sadly, the good folk that are balanced and support what you are doing don't speak up.
    The truth is, Sanstrom and many of his talk radio zombies will never see anything other than their idea that mass deportation is the only way.

    I feel sorry that people are so full of hate they will not give people a 2nd chance. Its gotta be exhausting.

    Some day Sanstroms bill bill be long gone. He will be viewed as the leader that failed to solve a complex problem.

  • curious george Orem, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:49 a.m.

    I'm curious as to how this proposel would change anything. All this does is add fuel to the fire. It will never get off the ground. So what's Luz and Paul's motivation here? Trying to look good to their constituants? Just another program that would divert resources away from worthy programs and one that will be preverted and abused in a short time by those coming to this country illegally. What a joke!

  • facts_r_stubborn Kaysville, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:46 a.m.

    There is much inconsistent thought on both extremes of this issue. Utah should not be passing its own immigration laws whether enforcement related, as in Sandstrom's bill, or benefit side legislation as this proposal seems to be. Interestingly, there is merit in both proposals but they won't work in reality.

    Sandstrom's bill seeks to do what is already available under federal law. Local law enforcement can already participate in enforcment efforts through 287-G and secure communities. Only two Utah counties have done so, perhaps because of the cost of training local officers & holding facilities. Sandstrom's bill is also an "unfunded mandate" from the state to cash strapped local governments.

    On the benefit side, any state based program similar to a guest worker program will encourage undocumented workers to come to Utah in search of employment. While this may be good for Utah's economy it will have unintended consequences.

    The fact is, Congress needs to get courage and take the lead with comprehensive reform. States definately have a role to play, but they should not and cannot direct the national policy on immigration. Real and effective change will not be easy or popular.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:37 a.m.

    Notice that this bill mocks and renders practically meaningless, for most practical intents and purposes, the very notion of U.S. Citizenship. It essentially grants blanket Amnesty to virtually all illegals who already are here, and opens wide the floodgates to more not yet here.

    Notice that if one were to consider the logical potential of the Mero-Robles bill, illegals would, in fact, be allowed to take EVERY single job in America, and put EVERY single American out of work. That is true! Read the article carefully!

    This is the sacrifice Robles is willing to make for her people, the Mexican people, and that Mero is willing to make for virtually unlimited, cheap, NON-CITIZEN labor.

    Mark Willes, you may not like what I have said. But this is an opinion forum and the above is my reasonable opinion. Shame on you if you delete it.

  • Ron Hilton Holladay, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:30 a.m.

    I don't buy the argument that illegal immigrants are harming the US economy. Economic prosperity is a function of improving productivity which is a function of training people for higher-skilled jobs. Forcing higher-skilled US citizens to take low-skill low-wage jobs, even if it were possible, would merely substitute underemployment for unemployment and not really improve the economy. An artificially low limit on guest workers is working against the free market. The illegal immigrants are meeting a genuine market demand, plain and simple. However, we do need to eliminate false economic incentives to hire illegals (e.g. tax evasion). That's why a guest worker program is needed to bring them out of the shadows, and allow the free market to determine the appropriate number without distortion. But the federal government and not the state is where the problem needs to be addressed.

  • miffedsportsfan Sandy, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:27 a.m.

    I say pass the bill!!
    Then when the illegals show up to apply for the permit, arrest them and deport them then and there!!!

  • CJ Murray, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 10:22 a.m.

    Immigrants "want to be a part of something". Ok, go back to Mexico and be a part of building that country and throw the drug dealers out, there is something to be a part of. " You want "accountability"? How about demonstrating that you can obey the law and be self sustaining before you crash through the border to come here? You want to "come out of the shadows"? How about going home and applying to come here legally with documents that allow you to be here? Yapias and Robles are quickly becoming the King and Queen of comedy in Utah, in any case they need their hearing checked, no one wants what they are pedaling in any of the various forms they continue to try and package it.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:49 a.m.

    This is a good bill in that it should pass Constitutional muster.

    Of course no matter what the state does would effect what the feds do. This merely outlines what the state will not do. If these people have a permit the state will not cooperate in deporting them.

    Its probably a good idea to have them documented so far as the state is concerned. Good for them good for us.

  • Pablo Sanchez De La Cruz Ramos woods cross, utah
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:45 a.m.

    This is exciting news. Finally, a safe place for us "good" undocumented immigrants to come to. Finally, I do not have to live in fear. Now, I can work just like all of you. I am telling all of my friends and cousins that Utah will be their best bet to live in safety. Soon, they will all come, and we can all be friends and work together.

  • Dave from Taylorsville Taylorsville, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:43 a.m.

    Rep. Robles - "All applicants would undergo a criminal background check."

    Item 1: Entered US without permission. . . check!
    Item 2: Stayed in US without permission . . . check!
    Item 3: Grafting off US governmental services and economy. . . check! OOPS, that's not a criminal offenses, lots of US citizens do that every day, but what the heck.

    NOW- The next time I shear or see the term "Undocumented Immigrant" I'm going to hurl. . . Nobody is willing to call a spade a spade. Tip toe around the issue. Luz Robles isn't about to look like she is upsetting the apple cart of her hispanic supporters though.

    This proposed bill will NEVER fly. It comes down to 4 words. . . "You Can't Do That!"

  • AZRods Maricopa, AZ
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:41 a.m.

    Lots of opinions, not many realistic solutions.
    Here in AZ, SB1070 failed for a number of reasons.
    Obviously, demanding to ship out all illegals will also fail based on 100+ years of history.
    When our country's constitution was written along with the bill of rights, everyone who represented their state had to be willing to adjust & accept ideas that weren't in line with their desires or beliefs.
    Slavery was among those touchy issues.
    If some variation of these bills currently being proposed, would require companies to tax the immigrants and charge for health benefits, then it begins to take away at least some of the issues that
    anger alot of people in the US.
    And, the commission of any serious crime would result in immediate deportation and loss of future rights to return.
    Additionally, the borders would have to be completely controlled, which the Arizona law did little to address this.
    But again, to just sit at our computors and yell "ship em all back to Mexico" is among the least viable solutions. It's not going to happen!

  • echo Austin, TX
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:40 a.m.

    Why do otherwise kind and Christian people go so crazy when discussing illegal immigrants? Most are looking for a better life for their family and are not trying to be criminals. They have kids they take to school every day and they probably serve you food in restaurants and clean and build your homes. I have lived all over the US- New England, Southwest, East, West and they want what we all want.

    The brightest illegal kids graduate high school and go to college without student loans or grants. They get masters degrees waiting for the DREAM act to pass. Many have never gone to school in their native country and write only English. There's no "line" for them to get into to be able to work an participate here. What do we expect- it would be like sending our kids back to Denmark or England. They don't fit there and we won't let them fit here either.

    In the case of Mexico, their problems are caused, in part, by US gun laws and US drug addicts paying narcoterrorists for drugs. We are not without fault- we shouldn't be so eager to cast stones.

  • across the sea Topeno, Finland
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:30 a.m.

    WHAT??? MAking them less illegal???

    First of all!
    Make hiring illegals punishable and enforce that!

    Second: Make a quest worker program like all civilized countries have.

    Third: Realize that NOT ALL who come to the US wish to stay! Historical FACT is that most came - and went back.

    BUT the present system is impossible to handle.
    Germany has done well with their gast arbeiter program.

    NEVER should the US allow illegals to benefit from their illegal past.
    The sad thing is that the ones of us who stayed in the country LEGALLY were treated very poorly by the US officials.
    As an example where a legal foreigner marries and the system takes SEVEN years to clear her Green Card. - I know, because I drove my daughter to the SLC office when she started the process.

    I know there are millions who suffer, but they knew what was taking place when they crossed the border, or over stayed their visas.

  • nick Provo, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:27 a.m.

    On the one hand Robles argues against the Sandstrom bill because it assumes responsiblities supposedly reserved to the federal government. Now she says it's okay for Utah to contravene federal law by running its own quasi-guest worker program. It is inconsistent and doesn't make sense.

    However, I do agree with Senator-elect Mike Lee that the Constitution gives States great latitude in making laws regarding legal and illegal immigrants. Unfortunately, activist courts over the past 80 years have struck down local and state practices and laws regulating immigrants (like laws restricting government employment for non-citizens) that had been on the books from 1787 until the 1930s.

  • Viva la Migra American Fork, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:24 a.m.

    Nothing like a little hypocrisy. I'm pretty sure Luz Robles and Paul Mero are among those who condemned the Arizona law because they claim it allows State and local authorities to involve themselves with immigration law, which is a Federal job.

    Now these same people want to have Utah legislate laws which trump Federal policy and give special privileges to illegal aliens? It should be a no brainer for Shurtleff to advise them that this is clearly unconstitutional.

    In a sane world, the Federal government would threaten to sue Utah over this for the same reasons they went after Arizona.

  • Phill Provo, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 9:05 a.m.

    This is awesome. !

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 8:51 a.m.

    Help the illegals stay here. Bunk! Pass some laws that make it difficult to stay here and they will self deport. I am so sick of these people that encourage illegal activity. Call the legislatures and demand that some tough laws rejecting illegals and their being here.

  • Ron Hilton Holladay, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 8:40 a.m.

    My opinion on immigration is that there probably should be a greatly expanded guest worker program, coupled with stronger border security, stricter enforcement, and a narrower interpretation of the 14th amendment (no "anchor babies"). Having said that, it is a federal issue and any state legislation would seem to be a waste of time. An AZ-type enforcement law may serve some useful purpose in helping to force the issue of reform with the federal government, but there could also be adverse practical consequences and costs. So I would say to immigration advocates and opponents alike to drop any state-level efforts and focus on reform at the federal level.

  • BoomerJeff Saint George, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 8:34 a.m.

    With unemployment at 9.5% (and the real unemployment number being around 17%) why would we want to add more people into the labor pool? This doesn't make sense, we need to do just the opposite, enforce our immigration laws to open up jobs for individuals who are entitled to them (ie citizens).

  • michaelitos Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 8:30 a.m.

    This is not amnesty, it's taking responsibility. This bill goes a long way to balancing the demands of justice with the mercy and compassion that all human beings deserve.

    It helps bring people out of the shadows in an accountable way.

    I applaud the Sutherland Institute's and Luz Roble's valient attempt.

  • jim l West Jordan, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 8:05 a.m.

    We need jobs for american citizens. We dont need amnesty. We need the illegals gone and not bleeding the system dry.

  • 42istheanswer SLC, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 8:03 a.m.

    No amnesty!

  • xscribe Colorado Springs, CO
    Dec. 1, 2010 7:48 a.m.

    Immoral, aiding and abetting, blah, blah, blah. Think about how we obtained this country in the first place.

  • Doug10 Roosevelt, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 7:31 a.m.

    I wonder if the authors of the bill even thught of other people besides Mexicans.

    This bill makes it easy for Canadians and people from the UK to come, pass the english part of the exam get a job and they are in the country for ever.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 7:25 a.m.

    this IS amnesty by another name, and it stinks!

    those illegals who chose to ignore it (should it pass) will STILL remain in the shadows - that's how they've always lived and there is no real incentive for them to do otherwise.

    this flawed proposal ENCOURAGES employers and illegals alike to CONTINUE to violate federal laws.

    It's a bad, bad, bad, bad proposal.

  • Bobo Magna, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 7:12 a.m.

    I look forward to the federal lawsuit, complete with Mexico's input, if this law passes - as it clearly overrides federal law.

    But, anyone wanna bet that such a lawsuit would never happen?

    Why? Because this is the type of law that Obama would clearly like to see as a way to grant amnesty to millions and thus encourage millions more to come here illegally.

    And, I am confused, wasn't Robles elected by her constituents to represent them? She sure seems to be going out of her way to represent illegals while ignoring the people who elected her.

  • flint Cortez, CO
    Dec. 1, 2010 7:11 a.m.

    Would not a criminal background check reveal that they have crossed an international border illegally, and therefore are required to be deported ASAP?

  • Rosebyanyothername Home Town USA, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 6:48 a.m.

    What makes these legislators promoting this think the immigrants will actually be honest and register for this "program."

    This is still a veil to get around their illegal status and stay in the United States of America. This idea is like a sieve, or Swiss cheese. It has holes in it.

    Sandstrom's bill has the right idea. Any other kind of this type is unacceptable.

    The new (suggestion) here does not change anything one IOTA. The illegals work here still and why do they need our permission to register and still be illegal? Makes NO sense.

    This is one of those 'spinning your wheels' kind of legislation effort. No traction to this idea.

  • CJ Murray, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 6:26 a.m.

    In the history of bad ideas this one takes the prize. It is nothing less than saying " here is a permit to break the law and we will look the other way". Robles and others are living in denial about illegal immigration, it is what it is,,, breaking the law to the detriment of others. Granting permission to an illegal to take a job legally from a legal resident is an outrageous concept, they couldn't possibly have thought about this one longer than about five minutes. The Sandstrom bill is the answer, come here legally or stay home.

  • raybies Layton, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 6:00 a.m.

    This article outlines a worthy legal compromise. Regardless of our citizenship, we all need some form of ID to work and drive in the state. This would make the illegal problem more manageable and allow law enforcement the ability to distinguish between those maliciously attempting to circumvent the law and those who have lawful intent.

    It would save our state and country a lot of expense to legalize this workforce, rather than go through the costly and overtly destructive effort of extracting them from the population. Give the illegal immigrants of the state a legal course of action. Help them come out of the shadows, and let's stop blaming other groups--but allow each individual a chance to take responsibility for their status.

  • C. Darwin Sandy, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 5:15 a.m.

    Why are our elected officials even considering laws to aid and abet illegals? Giving legal sanction to aliens who invade our country is immoral. Sen. Robles, do the right thing and scrap this lame attempt to subvert the laws of the land. Maybe, you can explain your ulterior motives in this legislation.

  • AmPatriot Kearns, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 3:25 a.m.

    I don't think the Utah legislator is allowed to grant work permits for the Taliban or any other criminal in this country. That is a violation of immigrtaion laws. Besides, an 'illegal immigrant' is not a legal connotation, its a deceptive description of illegal foreign national.

    You cannot be an illegal alien and an immigrant, its impossible with out laws. An immigrant is documented, an illegal alien occupying, looting, and pilfering this country is not an immigrant. They are a criminal economic terrorist, something that immigration laws are supposed to prevent.

    So if the legislators wake up and read the current laws they will drop this green card from the state proposals. However, punishing and criminalizing employer violations of federal labor and immigration laws is permissible.

  • My2Cents Kearns, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 2:58 a.m.

    Very bad and unconstitutional idea that will never fly. Utah nor any state can grant permissions or legalize illegal aliens or give illegal aliens an ID or permit them to be in this country. Only the federal government can't grant permission and give green cards to foreign nationals. This state legislation is way out of line even considering this act of defiance to federal immigration laws.

    The state can fine and act on business that violate labor laws and employ illegal aliens and should act to enforce laws employers are violating. In violating federal labor laws, these employers are also committing tax fraud and evasion, which the legislators should be very concerned about. Billions of taxable dollars are being funneled out of the country and past taxation by collusion with illegal alien employees and the employers.

    Want to balance the state budget, tax employers and illegal aliens.

  • bulldog Sandy, UT
    Dec. 1, 2010 1:07 a.m.

    OK Deseret News, so you won't print all of my comments, maybe you'll print part of them now that the story is 7 hours old, and you're about to 'pull' the story anyway!
    "Illegal immigrants would have to obtain a state-issued permit..."!! What part of ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT is it that you don't understand?
    Sorry, but this is absolutely ridiculous. First they say we shouldn't be making any laws that the Federal Government is supposed (?) to be in charge of, now they want us to accept the fact that they're here illegally and that we should give them a State Permit to remain here illegally!
    You want "accountability" Robles? Have those here illegally be accountable for their illegal actions by sending them back to their homeland and families.

    Nov. 30, 2010 11:58 p.m.

    The Federal government already has a guest worker program. A business has to sponsor them, and prove to the government that no Americans will do the job.

    State laws cannot exceed Federal laws. Arizona's law was a mirror of existing Federal laws (that are not enforced).

    This law exceeds Federal law by bypassing the requirements of guest worker program.

    With all the complaining about immigration being Federal responsibility, how can they change their stand so completely?

    A person who comes here illegally and work, commits a felony. Will this just count the illegal activity in their old country?

  • Carson Provo, UT
    Nov. 30, 2010 11:37 p.m.

    Rep. Steve Sandstrom's bill is the way to go. Tell your Legislator you expect him/her to support Sandstrom or they will be voted out of office. Let's clean up the Illegal problem now and put Americans back to work.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Nov. 30, 2010 10:25 p.m.

    Bad, very bad idea.

    This is a back door amnesty scheme, where illegals get a card to show they are "an approved illegal" immigrant.

    I hope the legislature rejects this plan and instead votes for Rep. Steve Sandstrom's bill to help enforce our border security and immigration laws.

    Legal immigrants are welcome, but illegals are not!

  • risus Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 30, 2010 8:55 p.m.

    This, and any other attempts to legislate illegal activity should be rejected. Shame on community leaders who won't stand up for what's legal, and right.

  • ouisc Farmington, UT
    Nov. 30, 2010 8:07 p.m.

    Class B and Class C misdemeaners mean absolutely nothing among the illegal population. Heck, they're committing a few misdeamers just to come here! This bill does nothing to deter illegal immigration--it does nothing to make it "difficult to live in the shadows" in Utah.

    The only difference between status quo and the passing of this bill is asking illegals to carry a work permit or they'll get a spanking.

    Businesses aren't encouraged to pursue this work permit. Heck, businesses will still prefer to avoid this permit, and do business under the table. So who will pursue a work permit? Very few. This is a miserable failure of thought.