Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker and city council members have rejected the idea of boycotting the state of Arizona. “The mayor never wanted to go down that road,” said chief of staff David Everett.
Council Chairman J.T. Martin said the notion was raised in the council meeting last week but quickly dropped as members didn’t even want to discuss the issue. With Utah spending about $21 million per year doing business with Arizona companies, an economic boycott would have a significant effect on the state’s economy.
Since Governor Jan Brewer signed Arizona’s new immigration law, Los Angeles City Council members have encouraged Utah and other states to send Brewer a strong message by joining them in an economic boycott. Arizona’s new law requires that law enforcement officers question an individual’s immigration status–if reasonable suspicion exists–while enforcing another law such as speeding.
At least two dozen other cities have agreed to boycott Arizona, and Becker said after traveling to Tucson and Phoenix recently, he could see the damage that has resulted. He said he’s aware that conventions and conferences have been canceled because some of those companies are now contacting Utah as a replacement option.
In addition, Utah could soon be experiencing similar ramifications, since legislators are working to pass illegal immigration measures. Salt Lake City Councilwoman Jill Remington Love said Utah was negatively impacted after the fallout over California’s Proposition 8–boycotts were proposed because of the LDS Church’s backing of the law banning gay marriage.
“We experienced that where we saw drops at the Sundance Film Festival and the lesson we learned from that is that boycotts can be overly broad,” she said. “They punish the wrong people. Certainly, a boycott of Arizona is going to punish the Latino and Hispanic community as much as the politicians who voted for this.”
Meanwhile, Brewer won’t back down amidst threats of a federal lawsuit being filed against her state over the new immigration law. “Our federal government should be using its legal resources to fight illegal immigration, not the law-abiding citizens of Arizona,” she said. To read more on that story, click here.
Sources: AP and Salt Lake Tribune
Tens of thousands of Americans capitalize on Utah’s concealed-firearms permits
Montana authorities search for missing Utah Man
Salt Lake Police Chief Chris Burbank says it’s his place to speak out against “racist laws”
Utah hit-and-run suspect surrenders after striking 7-year-old in Salt Lake City
Utah Senators Orrin Hatch and Bob Bennett won’t support Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan
Utahns busted for smuggling illegal fireworks across Wyoming border; 3 fires started in Utah County
Utah’s KSL NewsRadio dumps Sean Hannity; KNRS picks up popular conservative talk show host
Mexican drug cartels to invade Utah?