Monday, March 17, 2008

The Indiana employer-enforcement immigration bill failed last week. It could not clear conference committee in time for the deadline for legislation to be signed by the governor. Both branches of the Indiana legislature backed it with substantial support. Blame abounds:
Indiana's proposal died late Thursday when a House and Senate conference committee could not agree on provisions of the proposal -- which originally called for the Indiana State Police to enforce federal immigration law and would have made it a crime to conceal or harbor an illegal immigrant for profit.
A last-ditch attempt Friday to resurrect the legislation failed when Sen. Thomas K. Weatherwax, R-Logansport, and Rep. Scott Pelath, D-Michigan City, refused to sign off on a proposed compromise.
But its advocates think the bill's fate was sealed by the House leadership, which did not appoint its conferees for more than a week, delaying action on the bill.
Others say Senate leadership can take some of the blame for appointing a chairman, Weatherwax, who was not a supporter.