Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Immigrant supporters attack lawmakers with Miami radio ads

A group of immigration advocates in Miami is turning up the heat on lawmakers over an illegal immigration crackdown proposed in Tallahassee.

Starting on Wednesday, three organizations — Democracia Inc., SEIU Florida and America's Voice Education Fund — will begin airing Spanish-language radio advertisements calling out two Miami Republicans, Sen. Anitere Flores and Rep. Carlos Lopez-Cantera.

The spots attack the legislators for "betraying Florida's Hispanics" by "supporting" a pair of proposals moving through the state Legislature.

Lopez-Cantera, however, has said he is against the Florida House measure. So is Flores, though she is sponsoring a different version of the bill in the Senate.

"An anti-immigrant and anti-Hispanic law hurts, but it hurts much more when one of us supports it," the minute-long ad says in Spanish. Flores and Lopez-Cantera are Cuban-American.

Critics liken the proposed legislation to a controversial immigration law approved last year in Arizona. The courts blocked parts of the law from being enforced. Proponents in Florida say that, absent federal immigration reform, the state needs to ensure the nation's laws are followed.

The House bill, headed to a full chamber hearing, would require police to check the immigration status of a person who is the subject of a criminal investigation if there is "reasonable suspicion" that the person might be undocumented. Employers would be mandated to check employees' immigration status.

Its Senate counterpart would not go quite as far. It would have police check the status of an inmate, not just a person under investigation, and give employers more wiggle room on how to ascertain if employees are legally allowed to work.

Flores, whose measure hit a roadblock in a budget committee last week, has argued that the bill would be harsher if she were not in charge. "I'm able to bring the sensitivities of my community," she said last week in an interview, where she added that the House version "goes much too far." Flores could not be reached for comment late Tuesday.

Lopez-Cantera, the House majority leader and chairman of the Miami-Dade legislative delegation, reiterated Tuesday that he plans to vote against the proposal.

"Florida doesn't need an immigration law," he said.

Jorge Mursuli, president and CEO of Democracia, said he was under the impression that Lopez-Cantera backed the bill. After hearing late Tuesday about Lopez-Cantera's position, Mursuli said the group would reconsider the ad against him.

Republican leaders in the Legislature — namely Senate President Mike Haridopolos of Merritt Island, who is running for U.S. Senate — are under pressure to crack down on illegal immigration from tea party conservatives who were instrumental in last year's election of Gov. Rick Scott.

The issue polls well in Florida — except among Hispanics, a key voting bloc. Some Republicans looking to the 2012 presidential election worry passing an immigration law could further alienate Hispanic voters from the GOP.

Patricia Mazzei can be reached at pmazzei@miamiherald.com.

Immigrant supporters attack lawmakers with Miami radio ads 04/20/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 20, 2011 10:43am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. In advertising, marketing diversity needs a boost in Tampa Bay, nationally

    Business

    TAMPA — Trimeka Benjamin was focused on a career in broadcast journalism when she entered Bethune-Cookman University.

    From left, Swim Digital marketing owner Trimeka Benjamin discusses the broad lack of diversity in advertising and marketing with 22 Squared copywriter Luke Sokolewicz, University of Tampa advertising/PR professor Jennifer Whelihan, Rumbo creative director George Zwierko and Nancy Vaughn of the White Book Agency. The group recently met at The Bunker in Ybor City.
  2. Kushner to testify before two intelligence committees

    Politics

    WASHINGTON— President Donald Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner is set to make a second appearance on Capitol Hill — he will speak with the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, one day after he is scheduled to speak with Senate Intelligence Committee investigators behind closed doors.

    White House senior adviser Jared Kushner is scheduled to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee and the House Intelligence Committee. [Associated Press]
  3. Rays relishing surprise status

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays on Friday played their first post-All-Star Game contest at Tropicana Field while holding a playoff spot since Sept. 23, 2013.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Alex Cobb (53) throwing in the first inning of the game between the Texas Rangers and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, July 21, 2017.
  4. Exhumation of Dalí's remains finds his mustache still intact

    World

    FIGUERES, Spain — Forensic experts in Spain have removed hair, nails and two long bones from Salvador Dalí's embalmed remains to aid a court-ordered paternity test that may enable a woman who says she is the surrealist artist's daughter to claim part of Dalí's vast estate.

    Salvador Dal? died in 1989 leaving vast estate.
  5. Sessions discussed Trump campaign-related matters with Russian ambassador, U.S. intelligence intercepts show

    Politics

    WASHINGTON — Russia's ambassador to Washington told his superiors in Moscow that he discussed campaign-related matters, including policy issues important to Moscow, with Jeff Sessions during the 2016 presidential race, contrary to public assertions by the embattled attorney general, current and former U.S. …

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation after meetings with an ambassador were revealed.