New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez has directed state law enforcement to ask about the immigration status of criminal suspects, the key provision in Arizona's Senate Bill 1070 upheld by the Supreme Court. Despite the direction, Martinez says she never supported an Arizona-style crackdown on undocumented immigrants in New Mexico.
Martinez adds that she understands the "frustration felt by Arizonans" due to the lack of federal action on immigration reform. Martinez issued the statement in response to the Supreme Court decision throwing out provisions of the Arizona law.
The state's only Latina governor said her state has tackled public safety issues relating to border security in "responsible ways," citing her attempts to repeal a state law allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain driver's licenses.
The Republican governor, who has come under fire from some immigrant advocates, told GOP presidential candidates during the primaries to "tone down" the rhetoric on illegal immigration.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.