"I have no good explanation whatsoever for why (mandatory) E-Verify was not included in the Republican Senators' immigration proposal that was released a couple of days ago," Congressman Lamar Smith of Texas said today.
Smith, who will retire next year, has been trying to stop U.S. employers from hiring illegal workers for nearly all of his 30 years in Congress and has introduced mandatory E-Verify legislation during most of that time.
Pulitzer-prize-winning journalist Jerry Kammer said there is a primary reason Smith's long battle to protect workers from illegal-labor competition has failed thus far:
Congress has always found it much more politically palatable to put money into the border patrol than to control the worksite. And if you don't control the worksite, if that job magnet remains active, people are going to find a way . . . especially those who . .. in the words of former labor secretary Ray Marshall, work hard and work scared ."
Is that why Senate Republican leaders introduced a three-year DACA amnesty this week without a mandatory E-Verify provision to deter another flood of illegal immigration?
Kammer and Smith spoke at the National Press Club in a panel about Kammer's new book, "What Happened to Worksite Enforcement? A Cautionary Tale of Failed Immigration Reform. (Order it here.)
Kammer's book details a history of perfidy, with Congress and five straight Presidents routinely breaking the promises to the American people that the government would protect law-abiding businesses from the unfair competition of outlaw businesses who hire illegal foreign workers -- and promises that the government would protect American workers from having to compete with illegal foreign workers for jobs and wages.
Rep. Smith indicated that the perfidy may finally be ending with the "sincere" enforcement efforts of Pres. Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions:
I have been waiting 30 years for a President who would make enforcement of immigration laws a priority. And I am pleased with what this administration has been doing. . . . We have a Trump administration who is sincerely and, I think effectively, starting to both investigate, conduct investigations, and to engage in deportations as well, both sides. So it's refreshing to me to have an administration who is willing to enforce the law."
Smith said he won't stop his efforts to finally get floor votes on his mandatory E-Verify legislation which once again has passed at the committee level:
The E-Verify immigration reform is the most popular immigration reform, according to the polls, that is being considered. It enjoys 82% approval rate by the American people. No other immigration reform comes close, although several are in the 60s and 70s. "
But the Senate Republican working group did not include that incredibly popular mandatory E-Verify when it introduced a bill to grant a three-year amnesty to illegal aliens who are recipients of the now-ended DACA amnesty of Pres. Obama. The amnesty would allow businesses who want to hire illegal workers to continue to do so.
But Rep. Smith said mandatory E-Verify is more valued by House Republicans:
I am hoping that the House will have it (mandatory E-Verify) in their proposal. And I've talked to Chairman Bob Goodlatte, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee. And he certainly supports it. I've talked to Paul Ryan, our Speaker. He supports E-Verify. So I'd like to think that the House will improve on what the Senate has proposed."
-- ROY BECK is Founder & CEO of NumbersUSA
Updated: Thu, Dec 21st 2017 @ 10:00pm EST