Maes on Steele: ‘Many in Colorado do support Arizona law’

Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele on Monday said that Arizona’s stringent immigration law, SB-1070, is not representative of the Republican Party’s views as a whole, nor of the American view as a whole.

RNC chairman Michael Steele, center, with young supporters at a Colorado GOP fundraiser in Littleton. (Colorado Independent File Photo)

“The actions of one state’s governor is not a reflection of an entire country, nor is it a reflection of an entire political party,” he said during an interview with Univision, a Spanish-language television network.

Colorado Republican candidate for governor Dan Maes has said he would support a law similar to Arizona’s if he is elected. Reached today, Maes said, “Indeed, one governor’s actions may not reflect the entire party nationwide, but it does reflect the view of many Republicans who deal with immigration on a daily basis. Many in Colorado do support the Arizona law.”

Ken Buck, GOP nominee for the United States Senate seat held by Democrat Michael Bennet, could not be reached today. His campaign website includes statements that the immigration system in the country is not working, but he also notes there needs to be viable options for those who want to immigrate legally.

Colorado GOP Chairman Dick Wadhams could not be reached for comment on Steele’s position.

Rep. Kent Lambert, R-Colorado Springs, and Rep. Randy Baumgardner, R-Hot Sulphur Springs, plan to introduce legislation next year in the Colorado State Assembly that duplicates the Arizona law.

“I think the public’s ready for something like this because they’re tired of all the illegals in this country,” Baumgardner told the Pueblo Chieftain. “We’re not discriminating against a culture. A lot of people think it’s just Mexicans we’re talking about, but it’s not; it’s Chinese; it’s Middle Eastern — even some terrorists.”

Steele, however, hopes the debate can become less emotional.

“We hope, now that this debate is in full bloom, level heads will prevail and that we’ll reach a common sense solution with regards to immigration”

Joseph Boven contributed to this report

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About the Author

Scot Kersgaard

Scot Kersgaard has been managing editor of a political newspaper, editor and co-owner of a ski town newspaper, executive editor of eight high-tech magazines (where he worked with current Apple CEO Tim Cook), deputy press secretary to a U.S. Senator, and an outdoors columnist at the Rocky Mountain News. He has an English degree from the University of Washington. He was awarded a fellowship to study internet journalism at the University of Maryland's Knight Center for Specialized Journalism. He was student body president in college. He spends his free time hiking and skiing.

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