Tampa Latino groups to protest new Arizona immigration law at Rays game on Friday

Activists had called on Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig to pull the 2011 All-Star game out of Phoenix.  He has refused that request.  Nevertheless, with approximately 28% of MLB made up of Latin American players, protests to persuade Selig to change his mind continue (Some Latino stars, like San Diego's Adrian Gonzalez, have criticized the law and said if selected he would not play in the game).

Among the groups organizing the demonstration include members of the Florida Immigrant Coalition, including Students Working for Equal Rights, Democracia Ahora, the Auburndale Farmworker Ministry and Presente.org.

More than 100,000 have signed an on-line petition urging Commissioner Selig to move the game out of Phoenix.

Earlier this month, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told a reporter from Ecuador that the U.S. Justice Department will sue Arizona for approving the law , though Justice has not confirmed that.

Ever since Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed SB 1070, the controversial anti-immigration provision that won't go into law until the end of July, there have been protests by Latino groups and their supporters in Arizona and across the country.  This Friday night, there will be an "informational protest" in front of Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg by activists before the Rays game against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

There's also been a lot of support for the measure, with lawmakers and political candidates throughout the country espousing sentiments for similar laws in their states.  Here in Florida, GOP gubernatorial candidate Rick Scott has taken the lead over Bill McCollum, analysts believe in part, because of his rhetoric in support of the law.

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