Rep. Xavier Becerra on Immigration Reform

Rep. Xavier Becerra on Immigration Reform

By Your World w/Neil Cavuto - April 28, 2010

NEIL CAVUTO, ANCHOR: Well, Shakira is heading here - to Arizona, actually. It turns out that the pop star's popping off about that new illegal crackdown there. So, she is meeting with Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon to see if maybe, together, they can get this thing turned around.

But while Shakira's hips don't lie, apparently, neither do poll numbers showing nearly two-thirds of Arizona voters don't want the law changed.

Not stopping Shakira and not stopping California Democratic Congressman Xavier Becerra either, the congressman among nearly a dozen lawmakers denouncing Arizona's move.

Congressmen, what do you want to do?

REP. XAVIER BECERRA D-CALIF.: We should pass a real immigration reform that's sensible, so that we don't have to worry about people throughout the states worrying that the federal government isn't enforcing immigration laws, and we can deal with the real fears and frustrations.


CAVUTO: Yes, but you haven't, right? You haven't. That's why these people took matters into their own hands. They're fed up.

BECERRA: Yes, they - they absolutely are. I don't think there's any doubt about that. And I think we can appreciate that, that there certainly is a great deal of skepticism in America that we will finally deal with this. You need courageous leaders. And courage was not what we found in Arizona...


CAVUTO: But we don't.


CAVUTO: And I'm sure you're trying to work on this, and you have a history of trying to address this. But we never do. And these Arizonians kind of said, look, this is getting bad here, and we have got to do something. And they did.

So, what's to say that you, federally, are going to be doing anything differently from what you have not done in the past?

BECERRA: But, Neil, there's ways we could do them and there's ways the Constitution says we can't.

And if you could define for me what defines a reasonable suspicion that someone is an alien without lawful authority to be here, I would love to hear it.

CAVUTO: No, no, no, but that's not the point of reasonable suspicion they're an illegal. All you need is just if they're doing something illegal and they discover in the process of that that they're - that you're not here legally.

BECERRA: Neil - but, Neil, that's not right.

You - if I'm walking the streets, or if I happen to be finishing walking over a - through a crosswalk, and the light turns red...

CAVUTO: You think they're going to - you think they're going to proceed based on the color of your skin? Under the threat of a likely lawsuit, they will pursue you based on that?

BECERRA: Neil, you may not think so. I think so. My - my dad certainly would think so, because he would be one of those people who, I guarantee you, someone would look at and say, hey, maybe there's a suspicion. He was born in this country, although his - his speech is not perfect when it comes to English. But there are a lot of folks who would be very, very concerned.

CAVUTO: So, you think it's racist, even though - you're not saying seven out of 10 Arizonians are racist?

BECERRA: I'm sorry?

CAVUTO: You're not saying this is racist or that seven out of 10 Arizonians are racist, are you?

BECERRA: Well, those same Arizonans also say they believe a civil rights violation could occur. So, while they support it, because, as we just acknowledged, there's a frustration, a deep frustration, that not just Arizonans feel...

CAVUTO: All right.

BECERRA: ...they don't - they also believe that this could violate civil rights. And, so, what we should do is deal with immigration reform.

CAVUTO: All right, Congressman, we will watch you very closely, Congressman, what you're doing and what Shakira is doing.


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