Last week, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor launched a new citizen tool on his leadership website that was the subject of our weekly webcast. The Citizen Cosponsor Project allows citizens to show their support for legislation in Congress by using their Facebook account.
Currently, Leader Cantor only has six bills listed on his website, including two that are aimed at creating jobs for unemployed Americans. Not on the list -- the Legal Workforce Act that would require 100% of employers in all 50 states to use E-Verify, could open up millions of jobs currently held by illegal aliens, and would ensure that newly created jobs only go to U.S. citizens and legal workers.
In our webcast on Thursday, we showed a clip of Leader Cantor announcing the new addition to his website on Fox News' "On the Record with Greta Van Susteren." (The clip starts at the 1:50 mark . . .)
Leader Cantor says the Citizen Cosponsor project "allows people to engage in the legislative process, get behind bills, advocate positions in the arena in which they live online."
Polls have repeatedly shown overwhelming support for a national E-Verify law, including support across all political parties. A recent Pulse Research Opinion poll showed that 79% likely voters support an E-Verify mandate, while only 12% oppose. Of the respondents who have an opinion, 94% of Republicans, 84% of Independents, and 81% of Democrats support E-Verify.
Cantor says the new Citizens Cosponsor Project allows people to "engage" and "get behind bills" but the project doesn't allow citizens to do either of those two things with one of the most popular, bipartisan pieces of legislation awaiting consideration by the full House of Representatives.
In our webcast, we showed a letter that Cantor sent a NumbersUSA activist who visited one of his local district offices during the March recess. In the letter, Cantor wrote that the Legal Workforce Act was still stuck in committee.
It's entirely possible that Leader Cantor doesn't include the Legal Workforce Act on his new website since it is indeed still in committee. But H.R. 9, a small business tax cut bill, is stuck in the same committee the Legal Workforce Act is (Ways & Means), but Cantor includes that bill on the website. In fact, the Citizen Cosponsor website includes a list of bills at all different points of the legislative process.
We've concluded that Cantor doesn't have the interest nor the motivation to move the Legal Workforce Act. That's why it's up to you to "engage", "get behind", and "advocate" (to use Cantor's words) for a mandatory E-Verify bill. Over the last week, we've had activists faxing, phoning, and tweeting to urge Leader Cantor to add the Legal Workforce Act to his website, and more importantly, to the House calendar. Check your Action Board to see if there are any actions you can take in support of national E-Verify.
And to get weekly updates, don't forget to tune into our weekly webcast on Thursday afternoons at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time!
CHRIS CHMIELENSKI is the Director of Content & Activism for NumbersUSA
Updated: Tue, Mar 27th 2012 @ 11:22am EDT