Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff didn't quite, as Dr. Hook once sang, get his "smiling face on the cover of the Rolling Stone," but he has managed to achieve rock star status among many in pro-immigration circles.
Shurtleff was named Thursday by the iconic rock magazine as one of "The Quiet Ones: 12 Leaders Who Get Things Done" for his work on The Utah Compact the foundational document that helped launch Utah's controversial guest worker law, HB116.
It's true. Right there on the inside pages.
"You hear constantly that undocumented workers are a drain on our economy," Shurtleff told the magazine. "Well, now we're seeing evidence that it's not true. It's quite the opposite."
The magazine then gets rebuttal from Eli Cawley, chairman of the Utah Minuteman Project a loose-knit group that has railed against illegal immigration.
As usual, Cawley didn't mince words when it came to Shurtleff's approach.
Cawley said Shurtleff played "a demonic role in reinforcing the grip of the organized-crime cartels over the flow of exploited human beings into our state."
The magazine looked at people in a variety of issue areas ranging from the Occupy Wall Street movement to gay marriage. Among those listed as those that get things done: Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Rebuild the Dream founder Van Jones a favorite target of conservatives.
Rolling Stone then asked the question that might be most obvious on the minds of its reading demographic: "How did Democrats let a conservative Republican from Orrin Hatch's home state get out in front on this issue?"
To be fair, Sen. Luz Robles, D-Salt Lake City, pushed SB60 which later became HB116 at the beginning. But she also had the conservative think tank, The Sutherland Institute, and a freshman Republican lawmaker work on carrying that bill initially.
Matt Lyon, executive director of the Utah Democratic Party, also said it wasn't quite accurate to say Shurtleff led the way all on his own.
"There were a lot of stakeholders who carried it forward," he said, naming Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker; Chris Burbank, the city's police chief, and Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon.
Even if none of them actually made it into the Rolling Stone.
O See the online Rolling Stone feature that includes Mark Shurtleff. > http://bit.ly/ycUZ1X