Posted Aug 06, 2007 01:32 pm CDT
States adopted 170 immigration laws through June of this year, more than double the number in the same period last year.
A report by the National Conference of State Legislatures says most of the laws took an anti-immigrant stance, the New York Times reports. Laws cracked down on employers who hire illegal aliens and made it more difficult for the immigrants to obtain state identification.
Fifteen states fought the trend, instead passing measures to protect illegal immigrants from smuggling and giving them access to health care and education.
Some attributed the increase in legislation to federal lawmakers’ failure to pass an immigration bill, the Los Angeles Times reports.
“This is now a 50-state issue,” Sheri Steisel, an immigration specialist with NCSL, told the Los Angeles Times. “There is a tremendous amount of frustration at the local level now that the federal government has abrogated its responsibility.”