Green Valley resident Martha Belle Fray has been trying for three days to tell Gov. Jan Brewer to veto Senate Bill 1070, authorizing police to question residents about their legal status.
Just this morning the 71-year-old retired therapist tried three times and still she hasn’t been able to get through.
Callers to the main office hear a voice saying the office is experiencing a high volume of calls and asks them to call again later. The message runs in a loop. Finally, she ended up leaving a message at the Tucson office, although she’s still hoping to speak with a human being.
“How does she really know what a lot of us feel because she can’t hear from us?” asked Fray, who said she’s worried that Hispanic residents “are going to be hounded and that’s not what this country is about.”
Brewer spokesman Paul Senseman said the office has half a dozen people answering the calls at all times. He said it’s “not unusual” to get a heavy volume — noting budget decisions have kept the lines busy for the past 18 months. But he acknowledged the immigration issue “is near the top, if not at the top.”
He said he’s so busy that he hasn’t gotten an update on numbers, but 24 hours ago, without including letters and petitions, the calls were roughly 2,000 in favor and 13,000 against. Many are repeat calls, which are coming from all over the country, he said, and not necessarily from Arizona voters.
The governor has until midnight Saturday to decide what to do with the bill — sign it, veto it or let it become law without a signature.
You can take your chances if you’d like by calling her Phoenix office at (602) 542-4331 or in Tucson at 628-6580. There is also a way to leave an online comment at azgovernor.gov