Thu., March 3, 2011 5:40pm (EST)

State House Passes Immigration Bill
By Melissa Stiers
Updated: 3 years ago

ATLANTA  —  
People protest a bill that's intended to crackdown on illegal immigration. (photo by Melissa Stiers)
People protest a bill that's intended to crackdown on illegal immigration. (photo by Melissa Stiers)
The state house passed a bill that’s intended to crackdown on illegal immigration. Meanwhile, protesters stormed the capitol steps to deliver a letter urging the governor to veto it.

"Let them in. Let them in… "

More than a hundred people rallied outside the capitol while lawmakers debated the legislation.

Among its many provisions… one that would make businesses use a federal eligibility database to make sure new hires can work legally, and another that makes it a felony for those using fake id’s to get work.

Republican Representative David Casas of Lilburn is a legal immigrant from Cuba who voted for the measure.

"The fact is we have this problem because our businesses are hiring illegal immigrants," says Casas.

The bill also lets police officers check the citizenship of people being investigated for other offenses.

Opponents say that will encourage racial profiling. Democratic Representative Pedro Marin is from Duluth.

"I strongly oppose this bill due to its lack of moral decency by forcing human beings to be relegated to second class status," says Marin.

The bill now heads to the state senate.