View Full Version : Time to campaign again

02-02-2009, 06:12 PM
I just saw this article. May be we need IV core to set an action item alert to start this?


No Enforcement Without Benefits

Congressional authorization for E-Verify expires on March 6th (as it does for Religious worker visas and the EB-5 program), and this has the anti-immigrationists worked up in a frenzy. In the dying days of the last Congress, the House agreed to a 5-year reauthorization of E-Verify. The Senate agreed to go along with the proviso that half a million visas be "recaptured" giving relief to legal immigrants waiting patiently in line for years, and in some cases decades, for their turn. These visas had been undercounted due to errors by the INS/USCIS, so there is no increase in immigration involved. Sen. Menendez was responsible for insisting on some benefits in exchange for the anti-immigrationists' top enforcement priority. Due to the resulting impasse between the two chambers, the matter was deferred to March 6th.

Despite the overwhelming voice of the people in November, not much appears to have changed in the House of Representatives. Two Republicans on the House Appropriations Committee proposed attaching E-Verify to the gigantic catch-all economic stimulus bill currently the country's top priority, and the Democrats on that committee meekly agreed to do so without any dissent (so much for any show of support by the Democrats toward immigrants). A senior member of the Democratic leadership in the House is quoted as saying that "I think that they can make this one die in the Senate". We can expect that the anti-immigrationists will flood the Senate with thousands of calls and faxes on E-Verify during this week to deny legal immigrants any relief from lengthy separations from their families in the US. All this for a program that has been repeatedly criticized as denying jobs to USCs and LPRs due to database errors and which will delay Economic Stimulus relief from getting to the hands of those who need it (since the House bill conditions relief only to those employers enrolled in E-Verify). As Arizona learnt the hard way, most employers are in no hurry to enroll in E-Verify, the anti-immigrationists are asking Congress to sacrifice any chance of economic recovery in order to aid the antis in their racist goals of impeding legal immigration.

We urge the United States Senate and Sen. Menendez in particular to insist that any reauthorization of E-Verify include some benefits, at a minimum the recapture provision, plus hopefully some more benefits such as the nurse relief provisions which have been pending for a long time. There is no point in enforcing immigration law if there are no immigration benefits that law-abiding immigrants and employers can avail themselves of, such enforcement is racism in another guise. We urge our readers to contact the US Senate (and the media) to reject the racists' vision of America and to embrace instead a view of America consistent with the best in our history - America as a nation of immigrants.

We welcome readers to share their opinion and ideas with us by writing to editor@ilw.com.