In liberal MA candidates urge illegal immigrant crackdown

Michael Levenson
The Boston Globe

Staking out increasingly tough stances on illegal immigration, Republican gubernatorial candidate Charles D. Baker and independent rival Timothy P. Cahill said yesterday that they want to give police the authority to arrest people who are in the country illegally and charge them with immigration violations.

As the two candidates battle for conservative voters, Baker said he would reinstate a controversial agreement with the federal government that Governor Mitt Romney signed in 2006 that deputized 30 specially trained State Police troopers to detain illegal immigrants.

Cahill said he wants to go further, authorizing the State Police and all local officers to check the immigration status of suspects they encounter during regular police investigations.

Immigration is currently the province of the federal government, though many critics say Washington has failed to stem the influx of illegal immigrants, and the issue has emerged as a flashpoint in the Massachusetts governor’s race.

Romney’s order, signed in the final month of his term as he intensified his bid for the GOP presidential nomination, was reversed by Governor Deval Patrick in his first week in office in 2007. Patrick criticized the policy as a misuse of scant police resources. Some urban police chiefs, including Boston Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis, have said it would have strained relations between officers and residents in immigrant neighborhoods.

The article continues at The Boston Globe.

Comments are closed.