Massachusetts Governor Works To Change Immigration Laws

Patrick to focus on change for immigrants: Says he wants to integrate foreign-born into state

The Boston Globe reports that, in stark contrast to the expressed policies of elected officials nationwide, recently reelected Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick has vowed to push forward with his agenda to integrate immigrants, both legal and illegal, into the state. Two of the more controversial positions he restated his support for are offering in-state tuition and drivers licenses to illegal immigrants.

Patrick’s progressive stance on immigration is not new. In one of his first official acts as governor in 2007 he overturned a controversial policy enacted by his predecessor and 2012 presidential hopeful, Mitt Romney, to have the State Police help enforce immigration law. Here Patrick’s reach is far more limited as in-state tuition and driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants are barred under federal law. The governor acknowledged that these changes cannot come about “without some changes in federal law in both of those cases,’’ and that “working with the federal government is the only way we’re going to be able to move those forward. But I still think they’re right.’’

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