Immigration Enforcement

After 4 Senate Victories, How Do We Protect Them From Backroom Death?

By Roy Beck, Friday, July 10, 2009, 1:05 PM

What a week!

And, yes, the results were just as wonderful and just as scary as you might hope and fear.

Most of you are shocked by the Senate’s passage of 4 strong immigration enforcement amendments that would open up hundreds of thousands of jobs to unemployed Americans over the next year alone. Maybe even millions of jobs!

The Sessions E-Verify amendmentThe DeMint fence amendmentThe Vitter no-match amendment. The Grassley E-Verify amendment.

Rightfully, many of you are skeptical.  You are asking us: Did the Senate Democratic Leadership — that has opposed everything that favors unemployed Americans over illegal aliens — suddenly “allow” us to win as a kind of trap? What’s the trick?

First,  you really do need to take a minute to celebrate (just a little). Your pressure has caused the Democratic leadership to retreat a bit. The fact that congressional leaders believe that they have to concede some victories to us shows that your efforts are having some effect.

But, based on our information from inside Congress, we should expect that Senate Majority Leader Reid, House Speaker Pelosi and Pres. Obama have every intention of killing these amendments in a backroom maneuver when the joint Conference Committee negotiates the final bill to be sent to the President. (See below.)

NEXT 2 WEEKS OUR BEST CHANCE FOR IMPROVEMENT THIS YEAR

Friends, we spend most of our time trying to get good legislation just looked at somewhere.

We are in a totally different — and better — position at this moment. What we have now is amazingly good legislation already passed by the U.S. Senate — by easy margins! The good stuff is on the table. It’s on its way to law. It is ours to lose right now.  We haven’t been in a better position than this in a very long time.  Instead of fighting for our lives to stop something really bad, we have something very good to protect and preserve.

Our Action Buffet team already has several important faxes for you to send from your corkboard to protect the 4 Amendments.  But we will come back to you Monday with another task, and perhaps a number of others during the week.  One of our Capitol Hill Team told me late last night that there is no reason to save energy for any other time — NOW is the time to mobilize everything we have.

As you fight, remember that you aren’t fighting just for yourself or your family but for 15 million Americans and their families who currently are desperately searching for a job but can’t find one.

If you win in keeping these enforcement amendments in the DHS bill, hundreds of thousands of jobless families will once again have income, benefits and the hope of not having their houses foreclosed.  Is that enough incentive?

We are highly unlikely to get a better chance to make a huge humanitarian difference the rest of the year.

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July 12, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 1 Comment

Employer use of federal E-Verify program on the rise

By William M. Welch, USA TODAY
LOS ANGELES — Construction company CEO David Dominguez no longer worries about inadvertently hiring workers who are in this country illegally. That’s because he uses E-Verify, the federal program that allows him to quickly check the legal status of potential employees.

Dominguez, who builds residential interiors in Arizona and California, said that as word gets around about the program, job applicants without legal status avoid businesses such as his, Andrew Lauren Co., which use E-Verify.

“The system works,” Dominguez said. His San Diego-based company has been using E-Verify for several years in hiring office workers and laborers.

The voluntary federal program has seen a rapid growth in use this year, Department of Homeland Security records show. More than 1,000 employers are signing up each week on average, and employment checks are approaching 200,000 a week.

Use rises each year

“If the goal is not to hire illegal citizens, then you should have it,” Dominguez said.

Halfway through this year 5.5 million worker checks have been made by employers through the E-Verify online service. In 2008, 6.6 million checks were made, twice the number in 2007.

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June 24, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

More companies use E-Verify immigration database

By SUSAN CARROLL HOUSTON CHRONICLE

June 1, 2009, 4:12AM

What do Continental Airlines, the Houston Ballet, the city of Dallas and Sen. John Cornyn all have in common?

They all use the federal government’s E-Verify program to check if their employees are authorized to work in the U.S. legally.

A Department of Homeland Security database of the more than 118,000 public, private and government employers enrolled in E-Verify as of May 1 shows companies big (Tyson Foods) and small (the Ballard Street Café in Wylie) are signed up for the program.

Enrollment has grown exponentially in recent years, with about 1,000 employers signing up each week for the free Web-based program, according to DHS statistics. More than 6,100 Texas employers have enrolled as of May 1, including at least 60 city, county and state agencies.

The city of Houston and Harris County aren’t among them. Lakewood Church and the Houston Rockets, however, use E-Verify.

“Why not do it?” asked Gerry Boren, the city manager of Gun Barrel City, population about 6,100, which sits on Cedar Creek Lake southeast of Dallas. The city started using the system in May, and so far has verified the work authorization of a police officer and two public works employees, he said.

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June 1, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Utah Employer Praises E-Verify, Says Using it Helps His Business

A Utah employer who uses E-Verify spoke out in support of the program last week, saying that customers called him because he advertised that he participates in the program.

Larry Morrison of St. George, Utah — owner of Morrison Insulation LLC — told a city council forum that his company “gets ‘two jobs a week’ just by advertising that it uses E-Verify to check its employees’ work status,” and argued that “more businesses should use the system.” (The Spectrum, April 30, 2009).

The fact that small businesses see a public relations benefit through the use of E-Verify undermines the claims of big-business, special- interest groups that argue that the work eligibility verification system places a burden on businesses.
Read the full article

May 5, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 1 Comment

Stimulus Loophole Gives 300,000 Jobs to Illegals

An estimated 300,000 construction jobs paid for by the stimulus plan will go to illegal workers after leading Democrats removed a provision requiring verification of citizenship, a leading immigration expert tells Newsmax.

The House version of the $787 billion stimulus bill required verification of the legal residency of anyone put to work by its spending. But that provision was removed from the bill before members of Congress met to reconcile the House and Senate versions of the bill.

Steven Camarota, director of research for the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), tells Newsmax the verification provision was deleted by Democratic leaders even before the bill reached the conference committee, where differences between House and Senate legislation are normally ironed out.

“When it got to conference, the top people — not just the conference members, but the top people: Reid, Pelosi, and Obama — chose to kill the provision and not include it,” Camarota says. “This was a purposeful decision.”

The provision would have required that workers’ names to be vetted through the Internet-based E-Verify system. E-Verify, a joint project of the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration, gives employers a quick means of verifying employee eligibility.

“E-Verify is our most effective tool for preventing illegal immigrants from getting jobs, and they chose not to use it,” says Camarota.

The estimate of 300,000 construction jobs is based on U.S. Census and other studies showing that approximately 15 percent of U.S. construction workers are illegal immigrants.

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March 11, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Sen. Jeff Sessions Blasts Reid and Pelosi for Stripping E-Verify from Stimulus Package

Earlier today, Senator Jeff Sessions delivered a speech on the Senate floor attempting to add E-Verify back into the bill, citing studies from Heritage and the Center for Immigration Studies that said several hundred thousand stimulus jobs will go to illegal aliens. Sessions urged a floor vote, saying that E-Verify would more than likely pass a vote in the Senate. Sessions also mentioned that President Obama has already delayed the mandatory use of E-Verify for federal contractors not to mention that the program is set to expire on March 6 unless there’s a reauthorization. “Are we now seeing some serious movement to undermine one of the most effective programs ever to verify work eligibility?” Sessions asked on the floor. In a statement released earlier, he pointed to how the House Appropriations Committee unanimously agreed on two E-Verify amendments.

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February 13, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

E-Verify Passes House in Stimulus Bill

The House passed its version of the stimulus package tonight, which included provisions requiring the use of E-Verify to ensure that all new jobs go to citizens and legal immigrants. The Senate has yet to pass its version, so there is still an opportunity to add E-Verify by amendment. Rep. Ken Calvert of California and Rep. Jack Kingston of Georgia led the house effort.

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January 30, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Using E-Verify

From The Blogland of Earl Capps :

These days, workplace immigration issues are no laughing matter. Working in the construction industry and being responsible for the hiring of workers, I know this better than most people.

I do the hiring processing for new hires, which includes checking their eligibility for employment using the E-Verify system. While the proper scrutiny of the identification documents which are required by the I-9 form should be enough, thanks to a lot of unscrupulous employers, it’s not enough.

The E-Verify system is a good way to make sure a new hire is who they say they are. If they’re not U.S. citizens and are presenting work visas, images of their documents are kept in the E-Verify database displayed on the screen for comparison to the documents which the new hire has presented – if it’s not a perfect match, then you may be required to send them to the local USCIS office to clarify the issue, or release them from employment.

For most employers, the use of the system is voluntary, but in states such as South Carolina, which are mandating screening, E-Verify is something that you either are using, or may soon be getting accustomed to. If you’re a federal contractor, there is a pending Executive Order which will soon mandate its use.

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January 28, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

E-Verify system works, Pickens County officials say

Vince Jackson/Special to the Independent-Mail
Sunday, January 25, 2009

— Some legal measures that took effect Jan. 1 in South Carolina place added restrictions on illegal workers, because employers now are required to use E-Verify or other federal work authorization programs.

A state law now requires all public employers and public contractors employing more than 500 people to electronically check and verify the employment eligibility of new employees by accessing a federal database.

The Pickens County Council voted last year to require that all new county employees be documented as legal workers. The county also required that all vendors doing business with Pickens County certify that they are not knowingly using illegal workers on any county projects.

Margaret Thompson, a Pickens County resident who supported the state law, said information she has received from county officials indicates that it works.

“Pickens County decided last summer to go beyond the state requirements and immediately require anyone working for and doing business with this county refrain from using illegal workers,” Thompson said.

Jennifer Woods, human resources director for Pickens County government, said, “E-Verify is phenomenal. I don’t know why anyone would not want to use it. It is free, and you can get results in 30 seconds.”

Only roughly 30 minutes of training was required before Woods could use the program successfully, she said.

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January 26, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bush Administration Caves into Pressure and Delays E-Verify Regulation for Federal Contractors

Last week, the Bush Administration announced its intent to postpone a new regulation set to go into effect January 15th that would have required virtually all federal contractors to use E-Verify, the voluntary program run by the Department of Homeland Security that helps employers verify the work authorization of employees. (The Hill, January 9, 2009).   Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff first announced the E-Verify regulation August 10, 2008, stating he wanted the government to “lead by example.”  (Remarks by Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, August 10, 2008).  The move was hailed by true immigration reformers as a significant step towards curbing the employment of illegal aliens and reducing the taxpayer subsidy of illegal immigration.

However, as the effective date neared in late December , a coalition of special interest groups filed a lawsuit to block the rule from taking effect as scheduled. The plaintiffs included various organizations that have routinely sought to impede interior enforcement of our immigration laws, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.; the Society for Human Resource Management; the American Council on International Personnel; and the HR Policy Association. (To read more about this lawsuit, read FAIR’s Legislative Update).

In the face of this lawsuit, Homeland Security announced it will postpone the effective date of these new regulations to February 20, 2009.  A DHS Spokesman said the Department did not think the Chamber of Commerce and others would prevail with their lawsuit, and said “[the] pause merely allows litigants the opportunity to make their case before a judge, and prevents parties opposed to the rule from additional stalling through litigation.”  (The Hill, January 9, 2009).  More than 100,000 employers are already using E-Verify, with an estimated 1,000 new employers signing up each week.

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January 14, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 3 Comments