Arizona Boycott Initiates Sacramento Recall

Katy Grimes: With Sacramento City Council voting this week to join Los Angeles and San Francisco in the Arizona business boycott in response to the states’ recent immigration bill, many Sacramento residents are scratching their heads.

Maybe because some back-scratching went on earlier in the week behind the doors of council chambers. Sacramento City Council Mayor Kevin Johnson voted to support the Arizona business ban, in spite of his usual pro-business stance, leading me to surmise that in exchange for his much-needed vote on the Strong Mayor charter initiative, council member Rob Fong pressured Johnson to keep up the Arizona boycott charade. But it’s just my educated guess.

Immediately after the Arizona immigration law passed, Johnson announced on his blog that he would boycott Arizona, but then took the blog down the very next day. Johnson spoke to Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordo and appeared to agree to withdraw plans for the boycott.

But that didn’t stop council member Rob Fong who is taking credit for initiating the boycott resolution, and continues to champion the silly cause. Fong has been largely silent for years on all issues Sacramento, despite being reelected (with no opponent) in 2008. His only apparent goal has been to become Mayor. After Johnson was overwhelmingly elected Mayor against a two-term incumbent, Fong’s hopes were dashed. He’s apparently hoping for Vice-Mayor at this stage in the game.

When asked earlier in the week by local media why he was continuing to push the resolution, Fong’s response was “How can we not?” And then yesterday at a press conference to announce a new effort to recall the Sacramento City Council, Fong spoke to Channel 13 news. When asked if he had conducted any townhall meetings for his district regarding the Arizona immigration law and his push for sanctions, Fong replied, “Well, I didn’t ask them what they want me to do cause I’ve never asked people what they wanted me to do or how they wanted me to vote.”

He’s right. Fong does not ever ask the voters in his district for input. I live in his district.

To add insult to injury, during the city council Tuesday meeting, council member Steve Cohn ducked out right before the Arizona boycott vote began. He returned when it was over, demonstrating a pathetic sort of cowardice for a guy who just won reelection in his district.

Responding to an overwhelming outcry at such spinelessness, cluelessness and arrogant politicians, Recall Sacramento was born… yesterday.

Recall Sacramento is a new website site and conduit for Sacramento city residents and voters to oust the current elected leaders.

Created by local 1380 KTLZ radio talk show host Eric Hogue, Recall Sacramento offers individual citizens a chance to offer their specific (council district) citizen information to be securely stored within Recall Sacramento for an immediate action of the ‘intent to recall’ any member, or all membership, of Sacramento’s City Council.

Born of a desire to hold each city council member member accountable, citizens might finally have the leverage they need.

The website will collect data for each district. Already, there are four individuals who are considering pushing for recall of Cohn and Fong, and making a run at the council seats.

Will other cities also start up recall efforts? Stay tuned.

For a current, local take on Sacramento city politics, I have an opinion column posted on the Hogue News website: The Plan, the City, the Mayor and his Council.


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  1. Fred
    Fred 18 June, 2010, 13:57

    This whole boycott AZ is HOGWASH!

    All anyone needs to do is check with an attorney that SPECIALIZES in Constitutional law to realize that AZ’s law is NOT unconstitutional.

    Reply this comment
  2. Margareta Swann
    Margareta Swann 19 June, 2010, 19:51

    How dare these arrogant know it alls stick their nose in another States business!!. We are the only Country in the woeld unable to control our borders. The politicians are very generous with our hard earned tax moeny to which. We set taxes up to fill the needs for police and fire protection as well as infra structers etc not for those know nothings to spend it on foreigners who have not contributed one cent to our economy. I will not spend a diome in Sacramento or any City that is this low. I have a lot of visitors coming from around the world – none of them will get to see the Railroad Museum or anything else that that City charges and that goes for L.A. and San Francisco.
    What ever happened to honesty? Political correctnes is nonsense.
    M. Swann

    Reply this comment
  3. EastBayLarry
    EastBayLarry 20 June, 2010, 04:52

    Right Fred. Nor is it inappropriate. It is only a way for the state of Arizona to be able to enforce federal laws on immigration.

    Reply this comment
  4. Montana
    Montana 21 June, 2010, 13:43

    The Tea Bag Party are just “haters not debaters” or as others have dubbed them “screamers not dreamers”, with their failed attempts at stopping Healthcare reform, they say they respect the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence but they do not mind passing laws, through weak Governors (no one voted for this crazy) who only cares about getting elected Governor, on the backs of undocumented workers, that will not pass Constitution muster.

    Brewer signed into law;

    1. S.B. 1070,
    2. No permit conceal weapons law,
    3. The famous Birthers law,
    4. Banning Ethnic studies law,

    5. Could she be behind the Mural in Prescott, Arizona, ordered to be whiten,
    6. On deck to pass, no citizenship to babies born to undocumented workers,

    7. If she can read she should look up Arizona’s House Bill 2779 from two years ago (which was un-constitution and failed when legally challenged),
    8. The boycotted Martin Luther King Day, what idiots don’t want another holiday? Yes, you guessed it Arizona.

    Well Arizona, you can boycott new holidays and keep passing crazy laws and the rest of us will continue to challenged them in a court of law and continue to add cities to our Boycott of your state.

    I real cannot believe anything that comes out of Brewer’s mouth, in an interview she first said her father had died in Germany fighting the Nazi in World War II (war ended 1945) but of course we find out the truth that father was never in Germany and died in California in 1955. But we are suppose to believe everything else she says, right! No one voted for you for Governor, yet you keep listening to the tiny brains of the crazies and signing into law everything that comes into their feeble minds, it only make you look dumb, stupid or racist, or maybe all three.

    As for the Tea Bag Party, their phony patriotism is sickening; they are just racists going by another name. We all know you are just itching to put a sheet on their head? Let’s face it the Republicans had eight years to deal with health care, immigration, energy (remember Cheney’s secret meetings with oil companies where loosening regulation and oversight were sealed), climate change and financial oversight and governance and they failed. It appears that the Republican Party is only good at starting wars (two in eight years, with fat contracts to friends of Cheney/Bush) but not at winning wars as seen by the continuing line of body bags that keep coming home. The Republicans party will continue turned inward to their old fashion obstructionist party (and their Confederacy appreciation roots) because they continue to allow a small portions (but very loud portion) of their party of “birthers, baggers and blowhards” to rule their party. I will admit that this fringe is very good at playing “Follow the Leader” by listening to their dullard leaders, Beck, Hedgecock, Hannity, O’Reilly, Rush, Savage, Sarah Bailin, Orly Taitz, Victoria Jackson, Michele Bachmann and the rest of the Blowhards and acting as ill programmed robots (they have already acted against doctors that perform abortions).

    The Birthers and the Tea Bag party crowd think they can scare, intimidate and force others to go along with them by comments like “This time we came unarmed”, let me tell you something not all ex-military join the fringe militia crazies who don’t pay taxes and run around with face paint in the parks playing commando, the majority are mature and understand that the world is more complicated and grey than the black and white that these simpleton make it out to be and that my friend is the point. The world is complicated and people like Hamilton, Lincoln, and Roosevelt believed that we should use government a little to increase social mobility, now it’s about dancing around the claim of government is the problem. The sainted Reagan passed the biggest tax increase in American history and as a result federal employment increased, but facts are lost when mired in mysticism and superstition. For a party that gave us Abraham Lincoln, it is tragic that the ranks are filled with too many empty suits and the crazy Birthers who have not learned that the way our courts work is that you get a competent lawyer, verifiable facts and present them to a judge, if the facts are real and not half baked internet lies, then, and only then, do you proceed to trial. The Birthers seem to be having a problem with their so called “Internet facts”. Let’s face it no one will take the Birthers seriously until they win a case, but until then, you will continue to appear dumb, crazy or racist, or maybe all three. I heard that Orly Taitz now wants to investigate the “Republican 2009 Summer of Love” list: Assemblyman, Michael D. Duvall (CA), Senator John Ensign (NV), Senator Paul Stanley (TN), Governor Mark Stanford (SC), Board of Ed Chair, and Kristin Maguire AKA Bridget Keeney (SC), she wants to re-establish a family values party, that is like saying that the Catholic Church cares about the welling being of children in their care, too late for that. Yee Haw!

    Reply this comment
  5. Fred
    Fred 24 June, 2010, 07:16

    Gee Montana, it is so nice that you’ve got everyone figured out who does not agree with you. And of course, the quickest way to get everyone to shut up is to play the race card.

    Regardless what you think about Brewer or anyone else, the TRUTH of the matter is that boycotting Arizona ONLY hurts the small business owner.

    I find it fascinating that folks like yourself consistently use hate-filled language in attempts to get your “facts” across, yet you’re also the first ones to denounce any attempts by others to take a different stand than you.

    Boycotting Arizona will not work. This situation needs to be dealt with in the courts, not by public opinion. So, Sacramento boycotts Arizona, then Arizona boycotts Sacramento, then it continues with everyone boycotting everyone.

    You are missing the point entirely, because it is clear that you would rather simply name-call because someone does not want to recognize Martin Luther King Jr as a holiday.

    You think that people who come to the United States from Mexico purely to have their children should be given U.S. Citizenship? You don’t like the fact that Brewer banned ethnic studies laws?

    It sounds like the only racist on this page is you. I know it’s probably difficult, but maybe you can set the “race card” aside for the time being and try to understand what Arizona is going through with the unprecedented amount of illegal immigrants and drug runners that use ranch lands in that state to transfer their illegal cargo (human or drugs) to America.

    Maybe you can do some research to find out how many Ranchers have been shot at or killed. Maybe you can offer to go to Arizona and help clean up all the garbage that illegals leave in their wake (along with dead bodies).

    “Let’s face it no one will take the Birthers seriously until they win a case, but until then, you will continue to appear dumb, crazy or racist, or maybe all three.”

    Only to people like yourself who appear to be so blindsided by their own racism that they are not only unable to see straight, but because of their racial bias and blindness, are also unwilling to see anything beyond their own fallacious verbal meanderings.

    Reply this comment
  6. Fred
    Fred 24 June, 2010, 09:18

    From Larry Elder*

    (is a syndicated radio talk-show host and best-selling author. His latest book, “What’s Race Got to Do with It?” is available now; CREATORS SYNDICATE COPYRIGHT 2010 LAURENCE A. ELDER)

    U.S., Mexico agree to act on illegal immigration — by suing Arizona

    U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder questioned the constitutionality of Arizona’s new immigration law — before admitting he hadn’t read it. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton just confirmed that the feds plan to sue to stop the law. And Mexico, whose president said Arizona’s law “opens a Pandora’s box of the worst abuses in the history of humanity,” recently filed a brief in U.S. federal court to side with the law’s opponents.

    Is Arizona’s law, scheduled to go into effect next month, an unconstitutional assault on all things moral and decent? How else to describe the over-the-top reaction to — and the often completely false description of — the law by people who apparently neither read nor understood it?

    A New York Times sports writer, for example, said, “The law makes the failure to carry immigration documents a crime and directs the police to question people about their immigration status and demand to see their documents if there is reason to suspect they are illegal.” Federal law already requires that noncitizens carry documents to prove that they are in the country legally. Arizona makes failure to do so a state crime.

    What does the Arizona law direct the police to do?

    The law says: “For any lawful stop, detention or arrest … where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien … a reasonable attempt shall be made … to determine the immigration status of the person.” This means that if you (a) are lawfully stopped and (b) a cop reasonably believes you may be here illegally, then (c) the officer will check into your status. That’s a lot of hoops to jump through.

    What is a “lawful stop”?

    Lawmakers added an explanatory note to the Arizona law. It says, “A lawful stop, detention or arrest must be in the enforcement of any other law.” This is important, and it’s ignored or mischaracterized by some of the law’s critics. The “lawful stop” — which may trigger a further inquiry about a person’s status — must be for reasons other than a suspicion that one is here illegally.

    What constitutes “reasonable suspicion” that the person is an illegal alien?

    The Supreme Court has defined “reasonable suspicion” as “common-sense” factors that an officer must be able to explain. It cannot be a mere hunch. A bad cop can abuse any law. And yes, there are gray areas in this one. But officers operate under this kind of imprecision every day.

    Can a person be stopped because he or she “looks” Mexican? Again, the stop must be for a reason other than a suspicion of illegal entry. But after a lawful stop, can “looking Mexican” trigger the suspicion of illegality? The law says: “A law enforcement official … may not consider race, color or national origin in the enforcement of this section except to the extent permitted by the United States or Arizona Constitution.” Ethnicity or race can be a factor if coupled with, for example, the commission of a traffic offense while having no driver’s license or other government-issued ID and not being able to speak English.

    What proof must be shown?

    The law says proof of legal residence can be an Arizona driver’s license, an Arizona-issued ID, a tribal ID or a federal, state or local government-issued ID.

    U.S. Attorney General Holder says the Arizona law “has the possibility of leading to racial profiling.” To repeat, racial profiling — using race or ethnicity as the sole criterion — is illegal under U.S. and Arizona law.

    Seventy-three percent of Americans approve of “requiring people to produce documents verifying legal status.” Sixty-seven percent approve of “allowing police to detain anyone unable to verify legal status.” And 62 percent believe in “allowing police to question anyone they think may be in the country illegally” — which goes even further than does the Arizona law.

    Yes, illegal aliens are humans. They also broke the law and cut in front of others who are trying to come here legally. Most illegal aliens from south-of-the-border countries are “unskilled.” They compete against unskilled Americans — often while taking advantage of taxpayer-provided education, healthcare and other benefits.

    Many Americans are open to increasing legal immigration and to a temporary worker program — but the debate is pointless without secure borders. The Arizona-Mexico border remains porous and dangerous. And nearly half of illegal aliens enter legally but overstay — with little or nothing done to keep track of them.

    How does Mexico treat illegals in its country from Central American countries? The president of Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission once said, “One of the saddest national failings on immigration issues is the contradiction in demanding that the North [the United States] respect migrants’ rights, which we are not capable of guaranteeing in the South.”

    Where’s Guatemala’s lawsuit against Mexico?

    *For those unaware, Elder is African American. Elder writes for:

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