Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant and several state lawmakers are hoping to enact Arizona-like immigration measures in 2011 — the same year they’ll be up for re-election or seeking higher posts.
Bryant is a likely gubernatorial candidate in 2011, and if he seeks state government’s top job, he might be stuck in a crowded GOP primary. Illegal immigration is a major campaign issue across the country after a recently passed Arizona law reignited the national debate. That law requires law officers to check the citizenship status of those they come in contact with while enforcing other laws, among other provisions.
Parts of the Arizona law are being argued in the courts after a judge blocked several provisions, including the required citizenship check. The state is appealing the ruling and may tweak the law some. Supporters of the measure think their best chance is with the U.S. Supreme Court and its conservative majority, so the battle could be lengthy.
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