ARIZONA NEWS

Speaker believes Arizona House has enough votes to pass Secure the Border Act, send to ballot

May 24, 2024, 11:59 AM | Updated: 12:26 pm

PHOENIX — Speaker Ben Toma believes the Arizona House has the votes to pass the Secure the Border Act, which would send the controversial measure to the ballot in November.

“My experience has been that I think we’re going to have the vote,” Toma told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s The Mike Broomhead Show on Friday. “So, we’re going to get it done.”

The Republicans have the majority in the House, meaning a vote along party lines would be enough for HCR2060 to pass and put it on the Nov. 5 general election ballot. It’s unknown when the House would vote on the measure.

The GOP has the same majority in the Senate, which passed the measure earlier in the week, but saw complications with the measure’s passing with some members concerned about its language and functionality.

If enacted, local law enforcement would be able to arrest those who they see cross the border illegally and not at a designated port of entry.

“I guess that caused a lot of concern among some members and some frankly some members of the business community and other friends out there that don’t understand what the bill actually is,” Toma said.

Opponents have argued the bill will be a repeat of SB1070, Arizona’s controversial “show-me-your-papers” law that passed in 2010 and was eventually partially struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Democratic Gov. Katie Hobbs has called the measure “harmful legislation” and voiced concerns that Arizona would lose business if it became law.

Toma said Hobbs’ issues don’t trump the need for greater border security.

“Quite frankly, I’m surprised that the Democrats aren’t voting for this because Hobbs herself mentioned border security in the State of the State but then hasn’t done anything at all of any kind to my knowledge to try to actually do something about the problem,” Toma said.

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Speaker believes Arizona House has enough votes to pass Secure the Border Act, send to ballot