Stuart GOP House Representative William Snyder was named by House Speaker Dean Cannon on Monday to chair the Florida Judiciary Committee.
The name is probably familiar to those who will recall that Snyder has already introduced an illegal immigration bill in the Legislature that he said back in the summer would be the envy of those who are partial to what the state of Arizona originally attempted to do with its illegal immigration legislation.
Snyder's bill was controversial even before it was discovered that it contains a provision that allows some individuals to be presumed to be legal in the U.S. if they can show proof of Canadian citizenry and or a passport from a "visa waiver" country, which means in most cases somebody from Europe. Citizens of those countries can visit for 90 days without having to obtain a U.S. visa., though they may be required to obtain a Homeland Security permit.
When Representative Snyder introduced the bill at a news conference in August, he was joined by then gubernatorial candidate Bill McCollum, who was desperately vying to spruce up his tough on illegal immigration image, after losing ground to Rick Scott on the issue. Most analysts believe that Scott was able to put McCollum on the defensive from the get go once he entered the campaign, and for the first few weeks of Scott's candidacy illegal immigration seemed to be a defining difference.
Proving that it was mostly about politics and hardly about the law, Scott pretty much dropped the issue once he got into the general election against Alex Sink, and he's barely said a word about it other than he thinks its a federal issue since being elected.
In an op-ed written Monday by Fernand Amandi, the managing partner of Bendixen & Amandi, a Miami based public opinion firm, Amandi blasts Alex Sink for deemphasizing the Latino vote this year.