May 13th, 2010
08:58 PM ET
13 years ago

2 mayors oppose Arizona immigration law, disagree on boycotts

Washington (CNN) - Two big-city mayors have come together to issue a message: Arizona's immigration law is wrong and should be repealed. But the mayors disagree on the issue of boycotting Arizona in response to the law.

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon and Los Angeles Mayor Anthony Villaraigosa, both Democrats, spoke with CNN Chief National Correspondent John King Thursday evening.

Both men oppose Arizona's immigration law that requires law enforcement agents to "determine the immigration status" of anyone under "reasonable suspicion" of being an illegal alien. Essentially, the law provides police with the power and responsibility that is normally accorded only to federal immigration authorities.

"This law is wrong," Gordon said in the interview that aired on CNN's John King USA. "It doesn't do anything for security. It doesn't do anything but really lead to racial profiling and it should be overturned and the [federal] government should do its job."

Villaraigosa calls the law unpatriotic and agreed that the federal government should do more to enforce the nation's immigration laws. The two mayors also urged the federal government to come up with a new immigration policy.

But Gordon and Villaraigosa differed on some cities' reaction to the law.

On Wednesday, the Los Angeles City Council asked all municipal employees to boycott Arizona. This includes suspending all travel to Arizona by municipal employees, as well as $7.7 million worth of city contracts with Arizona-based companies. This could mean a loss of up to $56 million worth of business that Los Angeles conducts with Arizona each year, according to Gerry Miller, chief legislative analyst of Los Angeles.

While Villaraigosa acknowledged that innocent Phoenix residents and businesses will be hit with "consequences," the mayor also said that "boycotts have been used in the past."

Gordon, while reiterating his opposition to the law, begged against reactions that will economically hurt Phoenix.

"We estimate it's already cost us almost $150 million at a time when we're just starting to recover on the economic front," Gordon said. "And this is about all businesses, not only immigrant businesses, but, you know, major corporations."

The mayor added, " … I plea to everybody not to boycott and paint us all in the same boat."

Though Gordon obviously does not agree with Republican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's signing of the law, the two agree on the point of boycotts. Brewer called the Los Angeles protest "thoughtless and harmful."

"An economic boycott against innocent people just adds to the massive economic burden Arizonans have sustained for years due to the federal government's failure to secure our borders," she said.

Boston, Massachusetts; New York City;, St. Paul, Minnesota; and the California cities of Oakland, San Diego and San Francisco also oppose Arizona's immigration law.

Filed under: Arizona • Immigration • JKUSA • John King USA • Popular Posts
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. southern cousin

    I'm sure that being good democrats they feel that tax payer money should be paid to illegal aliens for health care, education and all of those other giveaway programs that steal money from hard working legal Americans. Uncle Obozo will just steal more once it runs out.

    May 13, 2010 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  2. ib

    Of course the democrats oppose this bill; they are always looking for votes no matter where they come from. They're gonna need all the votes they can get this Nov.

    May 13, 2010 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  3. Carl

    If the law is so wrong, and the law essentially repeats the federal law (the exception being it can be enforced by Arizona, not just federal law enforcement) then why is the entire nation not outraged against the federal law? Why haven't they been outraged against the federal law since its enactment?

    May 13, 2010 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  4. rdepontb

    In the interest of the truth, I'd like to see more about the true cost of this new law. Some are saying it has cost the state "at least" $10 million in canceled or lost convention and related business.

    On the flip side, how much is the state (the nation?) saving due to reduced needs for arrests and incarcerations (and lower crime, insurance, along with improved quality of life and schools, etc.), jobs "kept" for legal citizens, and the like-the positive side of the equation that the Governor and Legislature were looking at in passing this bill?

    Come on; someone needs to at least make an educated, informed estimate on the credits and debits both.

    May 13, 2010 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  5. DENNA

    Good for them. We should all boycott Arizona. Let the bigots have it to themselves.

    May 13, 2010 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  6. Frozone

    This means boycotts DO WORK. Arizona needs to end racial profiling and lift their ban on ethnic studies. I'm sure Gov Brewer will outlaw Taco Bell any day now. Keep the pressure up and these kooks will have to end their un-American laws.

    May 13, 2010 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  7. Henry Miller, Libertarian, Cary, NC

    So, according to a Democrat "this law is wrong" when it's signed by a Republican governor, but it would be okay if a Democratic administration enforced the exact same law at the federal level?

    Politics as usual, contemptible as it is.

    May 13, 2010 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  8. Henry Miller, Libertarian, Cary, NC

    "Boston, Massachusetts; New York City;, St. Paul, Minnesota; and the California cities of Oakland, San Diego and San Francisco also oppose Arizona's immigration law."

    Is that the list of the American "sanctuary cities?" Either way, it's a list of cities I think I'll boycott.

    May 13, 2010 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  9. Ancient Texan

    The fact that the two mayors are liberal Democrats has everything to do with their stance on the law. Bleeding heart open border types are being totally political for the sake of votes from hispanics. Period.

    May 13, 2010 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  10. t22

    I'm sure Arizona will gladly send illegals to LA. Keep it up LA, you'll take care of the problem on your own. If I were a criminal looking for a safe haven, I'd go to LA, not Arizona.

    May 13, 2010 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  11. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Everybody agrees that we need to do a better job guarding the border and stopping the large hordes of illegals crossing over every day.

    The problem with AZ is that it helps set the stage and legal precedence for CITIZENS of all types to become victims of an every increasing Police State. Just the thought of being interrogated by trigger happy Police and asked "where are your papers" is enough to send chills down the spine.
    We don't need to go there. Fine employers and put the military on the border to help the border patrol do its job.

    May 13, 2010 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  12. Bruce Purmell

    Dear Gordon and Villaraigosa, check the public opinion, you fools. You can kiss your credibility with the American people goodbye. If you had any
    understanding of reality, And CNN can quote all the "big cities" that are opposing this law (like they would know) are not reading it right. These people will all be out of jobs soon, and it cannot be soon enough.

    May 13, 2010 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  13. Bob in PA

    The law is not wrong, it is simply an extension of federal law. Try visiting a foreign country and not having your passport on you when stopped by the local gendarmes.

    May 13, 2010 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  14. tim

    If our federal illegal immgration law would of ben enforced all these years 80% of the people crying about the law wouldn't even be here in the first place.

    May 13, 2010 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  15. phoenix86

    Arizona should repeal the law, and instead of deporting illegal immigrants, they should send them on a one way ticket to any of these cities that say Arizona is unfair.

    May 13, 2010 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  16. Bradley - California

    The federal government has already proven that it is incapable of doing its job, whether it's immigration or anything else. Keep he law in place and get rid of the freakin' mayors. Let LA boycott Arizona, who cares. When enough real Americans get on board, LA and the rest of the nation's dumping grounds that push for support of illegal immigration will become the places being boycotted.

    This should have happened in California, New Mexico, Arizona and Texas years ago.

    May 13, 2010 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  17. JP

    There is a direct correlation between illegals and tax rates. The more illegals in your state the more you have to tax your citizens to pay for them.

    Any one who thinks this isn't wrong should be thrown out of office.

    May 13, 2010 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  18. Takia

    Anderson, I am healthcare proffessional living in Maryland. I agree with Arizona. If the federal government will not enforce immigration laws, then it is the states responsibility to protect its citizens. Explain why there are thousands of illegal immigrants on Medicaid ( tax payer funded program ).

    May 13, 2010 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |
  19. BillCall

    The bottom line is that if you don't live in Arizona and have to deal with the illegals, the crime, the kidnappings, the drugs, etc.., you have no business opening you mouth - no clue (except for currying favor with hispanics) why (moron) Gordon is joining the mayor of L.A. I live in a suburb of San Diego - the San Diego City Council also took a stand against Arizona. I won't be spending a dime wiithin their city limits from now on. L.A. did the same thing. I often travel thru L.A. - I'll make it a point to not stop and spend any money there, use their motels, etc.. from now on. I will, however, make it a point to spend money in Arizona whenever the opportunity presents itself. I'll pressure all my family members and everyone I know to do the same.

    May 13, 2010 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  20. Marty, FL

    Even adding to Brewer's blatantly racial politics, the AZ governor just signed a ban on ethnic studies in school (Hispanic, Asian, African, etc.). This reprehensible nonsense deserves to be boycotted.

    Republicanos, no mas.

    May 13, 2010 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  21. g ontario

    whats next only whites can vote then shut down all but white business the nazi,s started out this way

    May 13, 2010 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  22. Tammy

    You can be that if the new law were written about whites or blacks the latino's from California (Las Angeles) would not be voting to boycott Arizona. It is only because they are all hispanic. If a person does not come into the United States legally they have the right to be questioned and arrested and deported. I am tired of paying for every other nations people when we cannot even properly take care of our own.

    May 13, 2010 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  23. Arizona Supporter

    I wonder what part of ILLEGAL is Legal?

    May 13, 2010 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  24. shooter

    Antonio Ramon Villaraigosa is the mayor of Los Angeles. He is a third generation of illegal Mexicans whose grandfather entered California illegally. Being a Mexican he will defend and protect all the illegal Mexicans in California. Voters will recall him very soon.

    May 13, 2010 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  25. Brenda

    The only solution for illegals that these two mayors want--as well as the Democrats---is amnesty for the 20 million illegals.

    However, the MAJORITY in the country have made it clear time and time again--–they do NOT want illegals rewarded/accommodated with amnesty for breaking our immigration laws. In our country, we do not reward criminals.

    We cannot take in the world. There are millions of people throughout the world who have applied and are waiting in line to come to our country through the proper, legal process. These millions of people should NOT get kicked to the back of the line in order to reward illegals.

    Does anyone really think that La Raza and the Democratic members of the Hispanic caucus would be fighting so hard supporting/defending illegals--if the majority of illegals were coming from Kenya, Ireland, Vietnam, etc????

    May 13, 2010 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
1 2