Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
Rep. Steve "Secession" Smith (R-Maricopa) is determined to win the title of biggest asshole in the Arizona legislature. Dude, the title is yours! Now knock it off!
The latest bit of assholery from Little Stevie is carrying anti-immigrant bills for his buddy, disgraced former Sen. Russell Pearce, which seeks to turn hospital emergency rooms into ICE agents for deporting undocumented immigrants. (A separate Pearce bill seeks to turn schools into ICE agents for deporting undocumented immigrants). Pearce regularly pursued these bills in the Arizona legislature since 2004 without success, because it conflicts with federal laws and the Constitution.
Under federal law hospitals are required to provide emergency room care to everyone, regardless of ability to pay or immigration status. There is also physician-patient confidentiality, and federal medical records privacy laws. But Little Stevie "Secession" Smith doesn't care about federal laws and the Constitution any more than his buddy Russell Pearce did. They hates them immigrants. Ariz. lawmaker: Require hospitals to check immigration status of patients:
The proposal by Rep. Steve Smith, R-Maricopa, would require hospitals to "reasonably confirm'' that those who show up at their doors are in the country legally if they do not produce proof of valid health insurance. HB 2293 lists methods that hospital officials and employees can use to make that determination.
But the measure also says if legal status cannot be verified, someone from the hospital "must immediately contact the local federal immigration office or a local law enforcement agency to report the incident.''
The legislation is drawing alarm from the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association.
"When does this begin or end?'' asked Pete Wertheim, the organization's vice president of strategic communication. "What other industry should be screening their customers for citizenship verification?''
The hospital proposal is just part of what Smith wants the Legislature this session to enact to deal with illegal immigration.
A separate measure, HB 2289, would require the state Department of Education to collect data on how many of students are not in this country legally.
Federal law, at least as interpreted by the U.S. Supreme Court, requires public schools to educate all children who live within each district, without charge, whether they are in this country legally or not. And nothing in Smith's plan would permit schools to turn away those who cannot provide citizenship proof.
Instead, Smith said the legislation is aimed at gathering data on the financial burden that illegal immigrants put on schools -- data he said Arizona could use to try to get reimbursement from the federal government.
But Dan Pochoda of the Arizona chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union said even just asking for that information is illegal because it would deter families of illegal immigrant children from sending their youngsters to school.
According to Little Stevie, this bit of assholery is just a gimmick to send a bill to the federal "guvmint":
As to why he singled out hospitals for special attention, Smith said it's a matter of money. "Hospitals and uninsured care is one of the largest burdens on the taxpayers,'' he said.
* * *
Smith said his separate bid to get a census of illegal immigrant children in public schools is a simple question of data.
"We just want a count,'' he said, saying no one knows how many students are in the public school system. But Smith said there are financial implications.
"The first thing I do is send a bill to the federal government for an unfunded mandate,'' he said.
This is pretty much Governor Jan Brewer's territory you are stepping into there, Little Stevie. You are not man enough to wear her pants.
Last year, Arizona's business community made it clear that it had had quite enough of the anti-immigrant hysteria from disgraced former Sen. Russell Pearce. His nativism was giving Arizona a bad reputation nationally, making it difficult to attract new industry and business to Arizona. Several anti-immigrant bills, cosponsored by his buddy Little Stevie "Secession" Smith, were defeated in the legislature last year. That was supposed to mark the end of the era of anti-immigrant hysteria. The business community must now step up and smack down this out-of-control teabagger Stevie "Secession" Smith to make an example of him, as you did to disgraced former Sen. Rusell Pearce. Enough is enough.