Bill that challenges automatic citizenship stalls in committee

Posted: Updated:

PHOENIX (AP) - A committee of the Arizona Legislature heard testimony on proposal that challenges automatic U.S. citizenship for children of illegal immigrants, but didn't take a vote on the measure.

The Senate judiciary committee heard three hours of testimony from legal scholars, immigrant rights activists and business lobbyists.

The bill's sponsor, Republican Sen. Ron Gould of Lake Havasu City, says he didn't have the votes to get the measure out the committee Monday, but that he doesn't believe his bill is dead.

Supporters of the bill say guaranteed citizenship results in taxpayers paying for services provided to illegal immigrants and their children.

Opponents say the proposal is mean-spirited toward immigrants and will be declared unconstitutional by the courts.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)