Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
Arizona's most conservative newspaper, the East Valley Tribune, has been publishing a week-long series, "We ♥ Russell Pearce" — OK, the actual title of the series is "SB 1070 One Year Later." The East Valley Tribune also gave "King" Russell Pearce a guest opinion on Saturday that Michael Bryan ably dissected in this post. Arizona Senator Pearce Attacks the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
A week-long series? Seriously? What's to report? Most of SB 1070 was enjoined by the U.S. District Court of Arizona and never went into effect. The District Court order was affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals last week.
Any claimed economic effects has far more to do with the Bush Great Recession and the collapse of the housing bubble. Arizona's economy has been unbalanced and overly dependent upon rapid population growth and urban sprawl for years. It's not just "illegals" leaving Arizona to find work since 2007. It's long-time Arizona residents.
Then there is the Arizona legislature which is doing its best to lay waste to the state of Arizona. If you think that doesn't have a negative economic impact, think again. And Russell Pearce has been at the forefront of these efforts. This is not something to celebrate.
Here is the series overview from the East Valley Tribune:
Status of the law: For all the debate it has caused, has SB 1070 really taken effect in any meaningful way?
Impact on community: East Valley neighborhoods keenly felt the exodus of Hispanic residents after Arizona's immigration law was signed.
Effect on other states: As lawmakers in other states craft Arizona-style immigration laws, fierce debates erupt on whether the measures would tarnish the state’s image or be struck down in court.
Political impact: SB 1070 was signed in an election year, and many candidates rode its coattails to victory.
Economic impact: SB 1070 prompted boycotts against Arizona. Some Hispanic businesses closed as Latinos fled the state. What effect ultimately did illegal immigration law have on Arizona’s economy?
Law enforcement: How have East Valley police departments been affected by SB 1070?
The Arizona Daily Star published the first report in this series by Howard Fischer from Capitol Media Services on Monday. Both Brewer, Pearce call SB 1070 a success. Apparently that was enough of "We ♥ Russell Pearce" for the editors.
Today, the Arizona Daily Star published an editorial opinion about "King" Russell Pearce. Pearce 'analysis' of SB 1070 success is pure humbug:
State Senate President Russell Pearce talked to a U-Haul dealer who said that business has never been better.
Pearce offered this anecdote as proof that even though it's been shown that SB 1070 has harmed our state's economy and reputation, he considers his anti-immigrant legislation a huge success.
He didn't mention the obvious explanation – that the spike is a byproduct of high numbers of Arizonans losing their homes and/or jobs and leaving in hopes of finding better opportunities elsewhere.
In Pearce's version of reality, as reported by Capitol Media Services' Howard Fischer, obviously all of those U-Hauls are filled by "illegals" – notwithstanding the fact that a human being cannot be illegal – fleeing Arizona.
* * *
Turning Arizona into the poster state for dysfunctional state government by pumping up the image of border violence and preaching about rampant crime has driven many people away. So has the Great Recession.
In fact, economists have calculated that the SB 1070 debacle, the state's resulting anti-Hispanic reputation and a national boycott of Arizona has cost Arizona businesses millions of dollars.
* * *
Pearce also offered anecdotes citing fewer people in jail in Arizona and a downturn in the crime rate – things he directly credits to SB 1070. In fact, violent crimes began declining here well before the law was enacted.
Dealing in anecdotes only gets one so far, and counting the effects of actions not taken is difficult, if not impossible, on a large scale.
But what we do know about SB 1070 is that the move to turn local police officers into federal immigration agents was strongly opposed by law enforcement officials, business leaders, human-rights supporters and many others (including the Arizona Daily Star's editorial board).
An economic impact study by a Scottsdale firm, which was paid for but not conducted by the Center for American Progress, released last November showed that the Arizona hotel industry lost about $45 million in the four months after the governor signed SB 1070 last spring.
Those visitors would have spent millions more in restaurants and other tourism-related business – and all that revenue would have generated sales taxes, which the state sorely needs.
But never mind all that pesky factual information.
Pearce had a conversation with a guy, who said …
Just one question: Why not be equally critical of Jan Brewer who wrapped herself in the hatred of SB 1070 to get elected governor? Brewer is as much a demagogue as "King" Russell Pearce. Fischer's report included Brewer as well. Let's be "fair and balanced."