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NPR: Private Prison Industry Helped Draft AZ Immigration Law


The legislative language approved unanimously at that meeting went on to become Arizona's immigration law (currently stayed pending court challenges). In the months in between, 30 of the bill's 36 sponsors drew in campaign donations from the private prisons industry, NPR reports.

The Corrections Corporation of America denies doing any lobbying on the Arizona law.

The Geo Group, another private prisons company, suggested on a call with investors earlier this year that stricter immigration laws is good for business:

In May, The Geo Group had a conference call with investors. When asked about the bill, company executives made light of it, asking, "Did they have some legislation on immigration?"

After company officials laughed, the company's president, Wayne Calabrese, cut in.

"This is Wayne," he said. "I can only believe the opportunities at the federal level are going to continue apace as a result of what's happening. Those people coming across the border and getting caught are going to have to be detained and that for me, at least I think, there's going to be enhanced opportunities for what we do."

The article doesn't tell the whole story -- for example, it doesn't mention the role Kansas secretary of state candidate Kris Kobach had in drafting the legislation -- but it's a good read. Piece here.