Mississippi Joins Other States in Denying Benefits to Undocumented Immigrants

State of Mississippi

Mississippi is joining other states that will deny benefits to undocumented immigrants under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program enacted by President Obama, according to Fox News Latino. Governor Phil Bryant issued an executive order hours before a committee to discuss a provision allowing law officers to check immigration status during traffic stops or other encounters, similar to Arizona and Alabama.

Gov. Bryant joins Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman in issuing executive orders barring certain public benefits -- including drivers licenses -- to undocumented immigrants. Bryant has cited Arizona as a model of what he'd like to see in Mississippi.

"Illegal immigration has real consequences for Mississippi, as it puts additional burdens on our already stretched budget," Bryant said in a news release. "This executive order will help ensure that public benefits go to only those persons who are lawfully eligible." He said that the executive order "does not change or modify Mississippi law."

Bill Chandler, executive director of the Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance, stated that the executive order may be challenged in court.

"Governor Bryant has built his political career around inciting hatred toward immigrants, particularly Latinos...I think that the governor is way out of line," Chandler told Fox News Latino. "Apparently, he thinks there is a horde of Latinos who may be descending on work places in Mississippi."

What do you think of Bryant's executive order? Is this an order that incites hatred of immigrants or is he within states rights? Share in the comments!

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Samantha Leal, Senior Editor

Sam edits and oversees all site content with a focus on fashion, beauty and lifestyle. When she's not working, you can find her watching way too many YouTube videos and reading (YA novels, mostly). Follow her on Twitter @samanthajoleal.

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