The South Carolina state Senate passed 34-9 a bill to make it a crime to create fake immigration documents, not to have one’s immigration card or give a false identification.
The bill was passed by 26 Republicans and eight Democrats with nine other Democrats dissenting. Like recent enacted and proposed legislation in Arizona, Georgia and Alabama, this bill focuses on bolstering the state’s role in curtailing illegal immigration though in some ways this proposal is not as stringent as those in other states. Under this legislation, people convicted of making fake immigration documents could be imprisoned for as long as five years. The bill would also make it illegal not to have one’s immigration card or to present false identification. The bill also prohibits immigrants without proper approvals from working in the state and requires law enforcement to fill out a form detailing the immigration status for everyone stopped, arrested or ticketed. However it would not be a crime – in and of itself – to be an illegal immigration in the state of South Carolina. Despite this well-rounded approach to illegal immigration reform, opponents of the bill say it sends the message that “we don’t want you in South Carolina if you are here legally” which of course is a baseless statement.