Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Mandatory Everify for Nation??

I have wondered why the US Chamber of Commerce supports HR 2164 "Legal Workforce Act" which would mandate the use of Everify nationally over a period of time. 

 Kris Kobach   has reservations about the bill based on the ideas that the federal government would not actually enforce it, if passed, and states have the enforcement right as noted in the recent Supreme Court case
Kobach: "The goal of the state laws is to encourage illegal aliens to self-deport. If Washington gets a clue and joins the states in this strategy of attrition through enforcement, so much the better. But the ideal enforcement environment is one in which both the states and the feds are on the field."  
"The states are actually enforcing these laws, in sharp contrast to the federal government’s lax enforcement approach under President Obama."
These comments (below) from Phyllis Schlafly add a little more grist to the mill.   Her proposed amendment, re tax deductions for wages , is an excellent idea. 
The comment on restricting states to mandatory use of everify only to government employees
was not readily found in HR2164, unless it's this proposal  (which it doesn't seem to say): -
"(2) PREEMPTION- The provisions of this section preempt any State or local law, ordinance, policy, or rule, including any criminal or civil fine or penalty structure, insofar as they may now or hereafter relate to the hiring, continued employment, or status verification for employment eligibility purposes, of unauthorized aliens. A State, locality, municipality, or political subdivision may exercise its authority over business licensing and similar laws as a penalty for failure to use the verification system described in subsection (d) to verify eployment eligibility when and as required under subsection (b)."
On the subject of  forbidding the states the right to punish, here is the proposed change to current law (read the highlighted text, the italicized words were added for clarification) :
Proposed: `(3) GOOD FAITH DEFENSE-
`(A) DEFENSE- An employer (or person or entity that hires, employs, recruits or refers for fee, or is otherwise obligated to comply with this section) who establishes that it has complied in good faith with [Everify] the requirements of subsection (b)--
`(i) shall not be liable to a job applicant, an employee, the Federal Government, or a State or local government, under Federal, State, or local criminal or civil law for any employment-related action taken with respect to a job applicant or employee in good-faith reliance on information provided through the system established under subsection (d); and
`(ii) has established compliance with [hiring legal employees] its obligations under subparagraphs (A) and (B) of paragraph (1) and subsection (b) absent a showing by the Secretary of Homeland Security, by clear and convincing evidence, that the employer had knowledge that an employee is an unauthorized alien.

Compared to the current law:  ORIGINAL : "(3) Defense   A person or entity that establishes that it has complied in good faith with the requirements of subsection (b) of this section with respect to the hiring, recruiting, or referral for employment of an alien in the United States has established an affirmative defense that the person or entity has not violated paragraph (1)(A) with respect to such hiring, recruiting, or referral."

Phyllis Schlafly   "Lamar Smith's E-Verify Bill Must Be Amended"
E-Verify, a computer process that makes it fast and easy for employers to check the validity of employees' Social Security numbers to ascertain if they are legal, was created by Congress as a voluntary system. It demonstrates its utility by verifying individuals within a few seconds with 99.5 percent accuracy, but only about 2 percent of businesses actually use it. Arizona passed the Legal Arizona Workers Act in 2007 to require the use of E-Verify by businesses in that state and to allow the state to revoke the business license of any companies that knowingly employed illegal aliens.
On May 26, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a five-to-three decision (Chamber of Commerce v. Whiting), upheld the Arizona law. The Court rejected the pro-amnesty claque's argument that immigration enforcement is exclusively the federal government's responsibility. . . .
The pro-amnesty U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which was the loser in the Arizona case, conspired with House Judiciary Committee chairman Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, to introduce H.R. 2164, which unless amended, will reverse Arizona's significant victory. This bill sounds helpful because it pretends to make E-Verify mandatory nationwide, but it actually ties the hands of the states.
H.R. 2164 pre-empts the states from requiring use of E-Verify unless employees work for state or local governments. That's equivalent to giving amnesty to millions of illegal aliens who are currently employed in our country.
H.R. 2164 forbids the states from using their constitutional power to revoke licenses from businesses that hire illegal aliens unless there has been "a showing by the Secretary of Homeland Security, by clear and convincing evidence, that the employer had knowledge that an employee is an unauthorized alien." There is no likelihood that an Obama administration will prosecute employers who use E-Verify but fail to fire the
illegals, or who contract out part of their workforce to circumvent the system.

The arguments for Lamar Smith's H.R. 2164 are fallacious. We are told that only the federal government can do anything about the immigration issue, but the recent Supreme Court decision provides the definitive rebuttal to that. We're told we need a nationwide congressional law because states like California and New York will never pass an Arizona-style law.
Now that states have the go-ahead from the Supreme Court to implement mandatory E-Verify and voluntary attrition is taking place, there's a better chance that many more states will imitate Arizona than that the Obama administration will ever enforce E-Verify.

Since Arizona's law went into effect, 80,000 illegal aliens have already left that state, and Georgia has seen a similar exodus. Their voluntary departure is without cost to the taxpayers.

An additional way to get employers to obey the law against employing illegal aliens would be to amend H.R. 2164 with Rep. Steve King's, R-Iowa, proposal to make E-Verify a condition for the employer to take a tax deduction for wages paid, a provision already adopted by Alabama. That would put the incentive on the employer where it belongs, and we would not need prosecutions or deportations.

No comments: