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Failed Florida immigration-enforcement bills spark national response

Several national organizations have released statements about the immigration-enforcement bills that failed in the Florida legislature this session. #

The National Immigration Forum said in a statement released on Monday: #

Friday was a victory for Florida’s economy, businesses, tourists, and immigrants. Florida’s heritage as a state welcoming to immigrants and visitors from around the world has been preserved #

The release commends GOP Sen. J.D. Alexander, chair of the Budget Committee and the “designated Republican quarterback of the anti-immigrant bill,” and highlights the opposition Florida business groups organized against the bill. #

Somos Republicans — which calls itself the largest conservative Hispanic Republican grassroots organization in the country — celebrated in a press release the failure of the Florida Senate’s legislation. The organization says: #

We hope this sends a strong message to those who have sought to use Latin communities as scapegoats. If we lose the State of Florida to the Democrats with regard to the upcoming 2012 Presidential elections, we will attribute some of the blame to Flores. #

Florida Sen. Anitere Flores, R-Miami, supported S.B. 2040, but eventually voted against the bill. #

Somos Republicans adds: #

While we are confident Hispanic voters in Florida District 38 will not forget the actions of State Senator Anitere Flores, we also hope the Cuban-Americans won’t allow Tea Party extremists to continue antagonizing our communities with fear mongering and false statistics. #

The Federation for American Immigration Reform — aka FAIR, an organization whose legal affiliate, the Immigration Reform Law Institute, helped draft Arizona’s controversial immigration-enforcement law S.B. 1070 — heavily criticized Alexander’s role in the debate, and stated: #

On Wednesday, lawmakers in the Florida Senate passed a watered-down immigration enforcement bill and watched it die as the House failed to take it up in the hours before the State’s legislative session ended Friday. #

We Are Florida! — a campaign launched by the Florida Immigrant Coalition that seeks to change the debate around immigration in Florida — stated: #

Despite the considerable threats of unconstitutional, costly and mean-spirited proposals, and the assurances of our strongest allies that “something must pass” the session ends with no such legislation. This is due in great part, to the formidable campaign engaging hundreds of groups and thousands of families. We are grateful for the courage of some of our elected leaders whose hearts where touched by the humble and persistent presence of immigrant families who have made their way to the seemingly impenetrable walls of the state capitol, resisting dehumanization and rescuing democracy. #

#

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