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Friday, October 1, 2010 - 11:34am

Top Lawmakers Name Immigration Panel

The leaders of the Georgia House and Senate have announced the creation of a 14 member panel to look into Georgia immigration laws ahead of next year's General Assembly.

The Senate leader, Lt. Governor Casey Cagle, says the aim is to use every option to lessen illegal immigration's impact in Georgia.

Cagle, a Republican running for re-election in November, says, a respect for the rule of law is one of the basic tenants of the nation.

"If the federal government continues to neglect its responsibility to enforce the law, we’re going to use every option at our disposal to lessen its impact in Georgia," says Cagle. "The members of this committee will take a broad, in-depth look at ways to confront this problem and offer concrete solutions to improve the regulations we have on the books already."

His Democratic opponent, Carol Porter, says while she's okay with having a panel, its timing is suspect.

"One month before an election Casey decides he's going to handle the immigration issue?" Porter asks. "One month before an election seems kind of pandering to me."

House Speaker David Ralston also named some of the panel.

The 14 members are all Republicans, chaired by two Metro Atlanta lawmakers.