The San Francisco Board of Supervisors was scheduled to vote yesterday, May 4, on a resolution introduced by Sup. David Campos for a municipal boycott of Arizona-based businesses as a response to Arizona’s anti-immigration measure, which we report on in this week’s issue .
“I would imagine that if Arizona had passed a law that said if any person is Latino or who looks Latino has an added burden to prove and demonstrate their immigration status, then most of us would say that … action is needed,” Campos said. “Arizona hasn’t done that, explicitly, but … that is the direct result of this piece of legislation.
“At some point,” Campos added, “those of us who are looking at what’s happening in Arizona have to recognize that for us not to do something, or not to say something, in some respects, in an indirect way makes us complicit in that.”
The resolution was continued until May 11 on a motion by Sup. Sean Elsbernd, seconded by Sup. Carmen Chu.
Reached later by phone, Elsbernd said he opposes the boycott, and that he continued the item so he could cast a ‘no’ vote. If an item is introduced and then goes directly to the full board without committee reference, as happened in this case, it requires a unanimous vote to pass, he said -- so if he had voted against it on May 4, the whole thing would have died. “I think the boycott is misguided. It’s not hitting the target,” Elsbernd said, adding that he opposes the law but thinks a boycott would have unintended consequences. He said he thought energy and resources should go instead toward fundraising support for Arizona Democrats who oppose the law, or lobbying in D.C. for federal immigration reform. While he said he traveled to D.C. for that purpose in 2007, he doesn't have any concrete plans to organize a fundraiser or book a trip anytime soon.
Sup. Chris Daly rose from his seat and left the room the moment the item was continued. Earlier in the meeting, Daly introduced a resolution urging a boycott of the Phoenix-based Arizona Diamondbacks, scheduled to play the San Francisco Giants here in the city on May 28, 29, and 30. Daly’s resolution notes that team owner Ken Kendrick has contributed significantly to the Republican Party, although he has claimed to oppose the controversial legislation.
Daly’s resolution encourages “those concerned about immigrant rights to protest the Arizona Diamondbacks in San Francisco on May 28th – 30th,” encourages Giants fans to attend other games to support the team, and “encourages the San Francisco Giants and San Francisco Giants fans to wear Gigantes uniforms during our home stand against the Arizona Diamondbacks to show our support for Latino baseball players and the Latino and immigrant communities.”