Arizona’s draconian new immigration law has split conservatives, with people like Rep. Steve King (R-IA) defending the law while others, like Joe Scarborough, call it “un-American.” In an interview WTOP on Tuesday, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) criticized the law, saying that “the whole idea of carrying papers and always having to be able to prove your citizenship” reminds him of “some other regimes that weren’t necessarily helpful to democracy”:
HOST: Well governor, if I could quickly ask, if a bill reached your desk that would require law enforcement to check papers of people that they considered reasonably suspicious, or a reasonable doubt that they might be illegal in the country, would you sign that?
MCDONNELL: You know, I haven’t looked at the Arizona law. We passed something in Virgina that requires a determination of immigrant status for anybody that’s arrested. Not as a reason to stop them to arrest them, but after an arrest for another crime, we actually determine the lawful citizenship or lack there of at the point of arrest.
HOST: But should legal immigrants be required to carry papers with them at all times?
MCDONNELL: Yeah, I think that’s — I’m concerned about the whole idea of carrying papers and always have to be able to prove your citizenship. That brings up shades of some other regimes that were not particularly helpful to democracy and civil rights.