Here’s why illegal immigration isn’t fixed, Part II: Businesses want illegal workers

UPDATE: Looks like Nathan Deal is already caving in on e-Verify. See Political Insider.

Here’s the real reason that high rates of illegal immigration have never been curbed: Business wants cheap labor. Republicans have made bashing illegal immigrants an implicit part of their party platform. It’s great red meat for a nativist base. But the GOP hasn’t actually done the cheap and easy thing that would bring down the numbers of illegal immigrants: crack down on businesses that hire illegally.

A bill currently before the Georgia Senate would require many businesses to use e-Verify, a free instant background check run by the Department of Homeland Security. Six people testified on the bill, all of them opposing it. From the AJC:

In testifying before a Senate subcommittee Monday, representatives from the state’s agricultural and commercial construction industries singled out provisions in Senate Bill 40 that would require certain businesses to use E-Verify to make sure newly hired employees are eligible to work in this country.

Critics say E-Verify, a federal program, has accuracy problems and can be burdensome for businesses. A coalition of businesses and immigrant rights groups is suing to stop a similar law in Arizona that requires all businesses to use E-Verify, arguing that it is unconstitutional.

Federal officials, meanwhile, say they are improving the free E-Verify program’s accuracy. It automatically confirms 98 percent of employees as being eligible to work in the United States, a federal report says.

In all, the subcommittee heard Monday from about six speakers, all of whom were critical of the legislation. . .
Bryan Tolar, president of the Georgia Agribusiness Council, was among those who spoke to the Senate subcommittee Monday. Tolar underscored the importance of agriculture in Georgia’s economy, saying it is a $68.8 billion industry.

“When I read this bill and we talk about requirements for e-verification, I see a shrinking of Georgia’s agricultural economy,” Tolar said of Senate Bill 40. “Are we setting ourselves up to turn the tables on our economy instead of to grow our economy?”

While Murphy was crafting his legislation last year, the Georgia Farm Bureau — which represents nearly 400,000 families — declared illegal immigration “is a federal issue, not a state or local issue.”

There is nothing “burdensome” about e-Verify. It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s free. It has a low error rate. The fact that it works so well makes it a problem for business owners, who, for now, get to claim ignorance about their workers, many of whom use fake documents.
(I wrote my Sunday column on a federal bill to require e-Verify. You can read the entire column here.)

This hypocrisy extends to Republican voters, who worship business. If voters wanted illegal immigration fixed, they would tell their elected officials to insist on e-Verify. But conservative voters prefer bashing immigrants to fixing the problem.

422 comments Add your comment

Paul

February 8th, 2011
7:39 am

Ms Tucker

The first part was spot-on. Statement of problem, analysis, solution. Cut across party lines and looked at the big picture.

The second installment? A local slant, but essentially it’s back to “Republicans bad.”

The effect? More partisan bickering, hardening of lines and no compromise.

Sigh………

Jimmy Pritchard

February 8th, 2011
7:39 am

Tick tock, tick tock, Cynthia. Ann Cox Chambers won’t be around forever. What are you going to do when her heirs refuse to continue subsidizing this worthless rag that you’ve run into the ground? You’re not going to get another paycheck as a full-time Obama apologist, and you don’t have the skills or brains to get a real job. Might I suggest Walmart greeter?

granny godzilla

February 8th, 2011
7:46 am

Seems to me the party so proud of it’s anti-slavery heritage is perfectly comfortable with a under class of shadowy underpaid and abused workers.

Can we call that a “180″?

OH and any democrats who feel the same way…..shame on you too.

Peadawg

February 8th, 2011
7:56 am

Whatever happened to cutting out all the bickering and name-calling after the accident in Arizona?

“There is nothing “burdensome” about e-Verify. It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s free.” – AMEN!

Road Scholar

February 8th, 2011
7:56 am

Good morning GG!

Businesses whine again; legislature bends over! Solve the damn problem and move onto the other critical actions needed on education, transportation, etc. Oh, by the way, critical items do not include guns, abortion, billboards etc.

Under the prposal to allow clear cutting of trees in front of billboards, does this include “clear cutting” billboards also? It’s only fair! I thought that local ordinances where eliminating billboards by grandfathering them until they need maintainance, then removing them. I guess the locals head can be turned by a little money disguised as fees.

JimW

February 8th, 2011
7:58 am

I’m a conservative and I completely agree that all employers should be using e-verify and following the proper precedures to ensure that the workers they hire can legally work in this country. So, please don’t paint me with your broad, anti-conservative, liberal brush, Ms. Tucker.

There is no excuse for employers to side-step the verification process in order to hire undocumented workers in order to lower their labor costs. Both parties need to get their act together and put some real teeth into enforcing the worker documantation requirements. This would certainly go a long way toward reducing the illegal immigration problem and at a very low cost.

Douglas

February 8th, 2011
8:12 am

Wow! I thought I would never agree with Cynthia on anything, but she’s spot on on this. I cannot see how one can say they are against illegal immigration and then not want to verify their workers?

Aquagirl

February 8th, 2011
8:18 am

Here come all the conservative whiners to declare they’re for e-Verify. Yet somehow these same people blame “libs” and “dems” while the Republicans deliberately refuse these measures and still get re-elected by bashing illegal immigrants. Tell me, aren’t you sheeple getting cold after they shear you nekkid repeatedly? You still trot down to the polling booths to keep Georgia red.

More idiotic, senseless cries of “build a fence on the border!” and “what part of illegal don’t you understand?” in 3…2…1…

Boogity-Boogity

February 8th, 2011
8:26 am

Aqua girl, go jump in a lake and don’t hold your breath. Your rantings solve nothing your just bitching. And when you trot down to the polling booths you vote for the same idiots that have done nothing except blame all problems on everybody else. so 6,5,4

Alatsea

February 8th, 2011
8:28 am

I worked for a company that used e-Verify. I hired an individual and e-Verify kicked back his SS number. The same person showed up two days later with a new SS card and wanted to fill out an application for work. I notified the authorities and was told they could not be bothered at that time. As all illegal immigrants say ” I love this country”.

quod erat demonstrandum

February 8th, 2011
8:30 am

So much for the leftist hate speech – oh, well their resolve to halt the rhetoric lasted – what 2 weeks?

This has two parts to the problem.

We have no guest worker program. The Union shut that down.

Without a guest worker program we will have illegal migrant workers. With a guest worker program, as we did in the past (the Bracero Program, as an example), would solve two problems.

As an initial screening to weed out criminal and other undesirables.
As a way of knowing who was in the country, giving employers more confidence in the E-verify program.

Aquagirl

February 8th, 2011
8:31 am

Well, here’s Boogity right on schedule, and he’s not pleased with his self-selected Republican Overlords. Baaaaaaaa!

Rufus

February 8th, 2011
8:34 am

C.T. can’t wait til a bill to pass, so she can write and say how unethical it is, how it goes against this or that. She would argue no matter what the GOP does,did or will do.
Oh well, nobody takes her serious anyhow.

james

February 8th, 2011
8:35 am

“This hypocrisy extends to Republican voters, who worship business”

You were doing well until then- no need to end with a childish attempted smearing which ignorantly isolates 1/2 of the US. Kind of like ending an education blog by saying most educators are female and therefore educators are all about emotion. I would say a good number of folks would vote Republican now as a corrective measure. I would also say the majority of independents who would now vote Rep desire immigration reform.

al gore

February 8th, 2011
8:37 am

Cynthia – I heard what an idiot you were. I’m glad I read one of your rants to know for myself it was true. Keep it classy….not.

granny godzilla

February 8th, 2011
8:38 am

james

1/2 the us?

math check

Georgian

February 8th, 2011
8:39 am

OH!

Its businesses fault that the government has not stepped up and protected our border and passed immigration reform! I didn’t know it was the responsibility of individuals or businesses to ensure that immigration was being looked after. Thanks for letting us know, Cindy!

Give me a break!

carlosgvv

February 8th, 2011
8:40 am

It is true business wants illegal aliens for cheap labor. Politicans also want them for the vote and The Catholic Church wants them for parishoners. Average Americans who want real immigration reform cannot fight this powerful trinity.

johns creek resident

February 8th, 2011
8:41 am

I thought the Republican bill is to require the use of E-Verify?

granny godzilla

February 8th, 2011
8:41 am

oxymoron alert

poster at 8:37 talking about “class”

Georgian

February 8th, 2011
8:41 am

Get it right, Cindy!

Republicans aren’t bashing the illegals! They are bashing the system. The system that allows them to BE here illegally. There is nothing wrong with them coming and working for jobs Americans feel they are too good for or are too sorry to do. But they must do it in a responsible and legal manner. Shame on you for not reporting the facts and truth.

restaurant owner

February 8th, 2011
8:43 am

i have two job openings for line cook. it pays $9 per hour, tough, long hours… i’ve hired countless americans for cook positions, white and black, and you guys are absolutely the worst. you steal, your lazy, your late, your stupid. YES… the mexicans are smarter than the bottom of the barrel in the U.S. Our high schools are producing nothing but dummies. no thanks whities and blackies. Now, i have an all american wait staff, and boy, are they stupid. The manager is retarded as well, when i have a problem, i usually fix the problem with one of my “illegal workers” because they are also more educated then my fellow brethren dumb americans. All of you folks complaining about illegals, get ready and start mowing your own lawn, build your own house, make your own food, dry clean your own clothes, stock your own grocery stores and hope you like $5 loafs of bread and paying twice as much for food. ENJOY!!!!

Georgian

February 8th, 2011
8:43 am

Cindy,

The TRUTH is that businesses still have to pay these workers minimum wage.

granny godzilla

February 8th, 2011
8:43 am

Georgian

Will you be offering amnesty to “illegal employers”?

Last Man Standing

February 8th, 2011
8:43 am

OK, let’s be nice, boys and girls! Remember, Jesus is watching.

Jesus Garcia, that is . . .

Ground hog day

February 8th, 2011
8:44 am

Paul, Cynthia appreciates your critique, I’m sure. (eyeroll). idiot. “Duh, the firstest parts were good, then she says the wrong ting, duhhhh.” knucklehead.

That the GOP is corrupt, hypocritical and evil is proof that they are just doing their job.

and what’s wrong wid dat?

but mostly remember, politics is only talking the talk. Nobody has ever walked the walk, except MLK, JFK, Obama and Lincoln. All the rest were posers and hosers.

Keep up the good fight!

February 8th, 2011
8:44 am

Georgian, you are not making much sense. Stop the hiring of unlawful aliens and you stop the flow. This creates jobs for legal residents, citizens and others. Shame on you for lack of comprehension.

Blue

February 8th, 2011
8:44 am

Aquagirl; maybe because that is not the only ‘issue’ that we consider? And your Shero, CT, paints with the broad brush that “Republicans worship business”, not knowing a THING about what all Republicans ‘worship’. I for one would be all for companies being penalized for employing people they do not verify. That being said, that is not enough for me to vote for someone that is at the other end of the spectrum on many other important issues…and certainly is not going to do anything more than Republicans about THIS one. Nothing from nothing leaves nothing…

Rufus

February 8th, 2011
8:45 am

Georgian, you don’t expect C.T. to report actual true facts do you ?

LOL

February 8th, 2011
8:45 am

Jesus, why do I always click on these links. Its ALWAYS just a bunch of retards arguing and calling names on here. You people need to get jobs, hopefully with a company that uses E-Verify too.

Gm

February 8th, 2011
8:46 am

Jimmy Pritchard

What are you a full time prostitute for for Rush Limbaugh, because he make 50 mllion year pimping poor misinform middle class whites.

Ground hog day

February 8th, 2011
8:47 am

Call it like it is

February 8th, 2011
8:47 am

Cynthia, I know your an opinion writer, and your opinion is the right is bad and the left is good, but you really could have open up here and find fault on both side to which you almost did, but of course at the end it is always the rights fault. Are we to understand from you that you can go to any “blue” state and not find anybody who is a diehard democart that has no issue with illegal’s?

You know why their is a divide, between parties? Its because of narrow minded opinion writers such as your self ON BOTH SIDES. See how easy that was.

Ground hog day

February 8th, 2011
8:48 am

Ground hog day

February 8th, 2011
8:49 am

what would jesus do?

February 8th, 2011
8:50 am

if all of us “citizens” of this god fearing christian country really believes in the teachings of Christ, then we should give them all Amnesty. What would Jesus Do? Hate, Loathe, disdain, sounds so unchristian.

Georgian

February 8th, 2011
8:50 am

Granny,

How can you punish employers when the federal government is allowing illegals to LIVE here and to be provided BENEFITS that our taxes pay for? Until the system is fixed, you cannot punish a business for getting the hardest working person possible.

Who do you want working for you? A hardworking person who is on time, will give you 150% all the time, doesn’t complain, goes above and beyond, is polite, dresses right, and does even better than they are instructed.

Or do you want someone who shows up late, does a half A** job, misses time bc they are “sick”, wears baggy sagging clothes, is disrespectful to staff, complains about work and how they work, just dont give a crap, and does less than instructed or just enough to get by.

Which worker would you choose? I hope its obvious. So until the system is changed and the GOVERNMENT stops allowing the passiveness to continue, you can’t really blame a business for scouting the best help/worker possible!

roughrider

February 8th, 2011
8:51 am

Dems want the illegals for their votes. Republicans want illegals for cheap labor. This is why neither party will do anything to stop illegal immigration. This is a fact just like the old adage that mechanics don’t walk, food service workers don’t go hungry and cops don’t get tickets.

Ground hog day

February 8th, 2011
8:51 am

Hey everybody: calling people names is FUN! Try it.

Okay, we’ll play the names games. Okay, here’s the rules. You take the first part of the blogger’s ID and add “oron” to it, then your repeat the second part of their ID and add “wanker” to it. Okay, lets take an example:

Ragnar. RoronRoron agnarWanker

Wanking Moron.

See? Okay, you try one. It’s the names games.

Georgian

February 8th, 2011
8:52 am

Keep,

FIRST make it an actual CRIME to illegal enter this country. Toughen the laws. Secure the border. Put some actual worry into these illegals that are here. PUNISH those that are illegal, not the citizens who are here doing what their government is allowing.

Peadawg

February 8th, 2011
8:54 am

“your lazy, your late, your stupid.” – Anyone else see the irony in this guy calling someone else stupid?

Van Jones

February 8th, 2011
8:56 am

Paul @7:39 – Amen brother!

james

February 8th, 2011
8:57 am

Granny- more than 1/2 against the dems right now- math is fine- me thinks you missed the point- anyways-

below is fine upstanding liberal-

Michael Moore vs Movie Accounting: Sues Weinsteins For More 9/11 Movie Profits After Already Pocketing $19.8 Million

Keep up the good fight!

February 8th, 2011
8:58 am

Georgian, there are laws against entering this country illegally. There are laws against hiring unlawful aliens. Those “citizens” hiring unlawful aliens are breaking the law. E-verify is a system to help law-abiding citizens avoid violating the law. Demand for unlawful aliens is what causes people to come here.

Roughrider….ummm, you do know that unlawful aliens are not citizens and do not vote right?

james

February 8th, 2011
8:59 am

Gm- for every Rush- there is a Michael Moore- all you prove daily is your on ignorance and bias- kind of a miny me approach to life.

Jimmy62

February 8th, 2011
9:00 am

I am conservative and encourage the use of e-verify. And last night happily noticed that my favorite pizza delivery chain uses e-verify. Just because the GOP can’t come up with many good candidates who will stick to principles doesn’t mean I’m going to suddenly vote for Democrats who either have no principles, or principles that I find destructive to our society and humanity as a whole.

granny godzilla

February 8th, 2011
9:00 am

Georgian

WHAT PART OF ILLEGAL DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND!

(You’d think for as often as that old canard is tossed out it would have been more fun)

If it’s illegal to hire an illegal then it would appears that there are
criminals on both sides of that there desk.

I must compliment you however on your parade of negative stereotypes.
Think you got every narrow minded, mean sprited one all in a neat little row.

quod erat demonstrandum

February 8th, 2011
9:00 am

Peadawg,

As I said, the lefts cry for civility applies only to the conservatives – leftist hate speech continues.

Aquagirl

February 8th, 2011
9:01 am

Well, here’s Georgian @ 8:50, right on schedule to prove Republicans worship business. Oh, those poor businesses, we can’t possibly fault them for hiring illegal immigrants! The government needs to construct a magical fence to keep illegals out, that’ll force Americans to pull their pants up and get to work on time—or something.

Charles

February 8th, 2011
9:01 am

WWJD
Jesus also stood for not breaking laws of the land you were in too! How’s that?