Last week Governor Nathan Deal signed into law House Bill 87 that I co-authored with many other outstanding legislators which aims to comprehensively address the social and economic consequences of illegal immigration. Over the course of the last several months similar comprehensive efforts in some other states have failed and I have been asked repeatedly “why did Georgia’s effort succeed when other’s failed?” My answer has always been “because the CITIZENS of Georgia demanded action.” This was not an issue led by politicians, but rather by the hard working people of Georgia that recognize the serious consequences of our federal government’s failure to secure our borders. The purpose of this note is to simply say THANK YOU to every Georgia citizen that took the time to write, e-mail, call or visit the Capitol on behalf of this bill. The measure would not have become law without you.
In particular I want to thank the Dustin Inman Society, under the leadership of D.A. King, for its untiring and unflinching work on behalf of this initiative. D.A. has been the staunchest advocate in Georgia for years on behalf of efforts to address the issues posed by illegal immigration and his knowledge and passion are unmatched. There is no one in Georgia that has a greater knowledge of state and federal immigration law enforcement efforts than D.A. and he was integral in the passage of the landmark illegal immigration reform measure SB 529 in 2006 and HB 87 this year. D.A. is the voice for thousands of Georgians that are fed up with their federal government’s failure to enforce the rule of law and I appreciate his friendship and am proud to have worked with him on HB 87 and look forward to working with him in the years ahead as we continue the effort to address this critical issue.
I have never been involved in an issue that had such a high level of citizen involvement and engagement and the measure would not have ever gotten out of committee, much less signed into law, without the persistent lobbying efforts of thousands upon thousands of Georgians. Let me again say thank you to all of the thousands of Georgians that supported this effort.