The adoption of SB1070 by the state of Arizona was a wake up call for me. Though far from the prairie, the bill made me realize how corporate self-interest could marry anti-immigrant sentiment and give birth to monsters. That monster migrated north in the spring of 2010, in the form of ALEC-inspired Minnesota HF3830, wearing Steve Drazkowski's jacket.
I learned that simply waking to the monsters prowling in America's political landscape wasn't enough. Working with others, we beat back HF3830, though Draz and his kindred still occasional rumble about the need for repressive.
Given the importance of SB1070 in my life as a writer and activist, it's enormously satisfying to read this headline and lead. Fox News Latino reports in Total Recall: Author of Arizona Immigration Law is Voted Out:
In an unprecedented recall election, Arizona's State Senator and Senate President Russell Pearce, conceded defeat Tuesday. The defeat was a stunning rebuke to the author of Arizona's controversial immigration law and could serve as a warning signal to politicians who have advocated hard-line policies on immigration.
The recall vote was widely perceived as a referendum on immigration policies by both sides of the political divide. Pearce himself painted the recall advocates as liberal outsiders who were targeting him because of immigration.
Although the GOP retaines control of the Legislature, Pearce's defeat is being interpreted by Republicans as message that divisive stands on immigration and other issues are not welcome by voters.
Rebuke. There were other rebukes last night--in Ohio and elsewhere--but none is so sweet as this, or one that will be as personal to friends, from an experienced labor leaders to a young organizer and a young writer. It's good to know that we can unite and turn this country around.
And important to realize that this is just one field rock in a long row to hoe.
Photo: Russell Pearce conceded defeat last night.