Candidates Uncomfortable with Arizona Immigrant Law

California gubernatorial candidates seek to distance themselves from harsh new requirements

By Matt Baume
|  Thursday, Jun 30, 2011  |  Updated 11:45 AM PDT
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Protests Demand Boycott Over Arizona Immigration Policies

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Gavin Newsom and the Board of Supervisors aren't the only ones opposed to Arizona's new law that would require that the police detain anyone who looks to them like an illegal immigrant. California Gubernatorial Candidates are timidly expressing disapproval as well.

Conservative Meg Whitman wouldn't comment at first, and later stated that she would oppose such a law in California. Fellow conservative Steve Poizner, who's previously prioritized enforcement of immigration laws, promised merely to "watch closely" how Arizona's law plays out.  Democrat Jerry Brown called the law "problematic."

Arizona's own gubernatorial race may hinge on the new law, with the current governor's support for the bill rallying her base (even though she was recently unable to explain what an illegal immigrant "looks like"), and more progressive voters now flocking to challenger Terry Goddard.

Whitman, Poizner, and Brown candidates aren't the only one looking to diffuse Arizona's problems. When activists began calling for a boycott of Arizona -- the bottled drink -- the company responded with a statement that they're based in New York and have no affiliation with Arizona other than in name. (A quick check of Wikipedia's list of AZ-based companies would have saved everyone a lot of trouble.)

Meanwhile, those opposed to Arizona's new law are doing anything they can to keep the conversation top-of-mind. One observer created a fake Google Maps option that, if it actually existed, would allow drivers to specify "Avoid Arizona" when getting directions.

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