From the Alabama Democratic Party
Chairman of the Alabama Democrats Judge Mark Kennedy challenged ALGOP Chair Armistead to a debate on Friday, July 8 in a statement issued in support of the immigration bill lawsuit filed by the ACLU of Alabama, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the National Immigration Law Center, the Asian Law Caucus, and several other civil rights and social justice organizations.
"Scott Beason's immigration bill is the harshest immigration bill passed by any state legislature to date," said Judge Mark Kennedy, Chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party. "Shame on Bill Armistead for issuing such an incendiary message that does nothing more than demonstrate his complete disregard for our legal system."
The immigration bill passed by Alabama's legislature earlier this year charges teachers with the task of checking the immigration status of their students. A protest of the law organized by Birmingham churches and faith-based groups, who argue the law criminalizes good Samaritans, filled nearly eleven city blocks.
Bill, check your facts – President Ronald Reagan, for whom many annual Republican dinners are named, granted amnesty to nearly 3 million immigrants with a sweeping immigration reform bill passed in 1986. Former President George W. Bush was also a staunch supporter of immigration reform that relied heavily on granting amnesty to millions of undocumented immigrants.
Under the Obama Administration, more immigration offenses were prosecuted in federal court than any other offense, and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement office has investigated twice as many cases as President George W. Bush did in his last full year in office.
Kennedy added, "I would be more than happy to debate Chairman Armistead on this issue. As a former Supreme Court Justice, I believe that the organizations that have filed this legal challenge should not be demonized for filing a lawsuit that raises important issues about the American Constitution."