February 25, 2008

A Nation of Laws

If, like me, you think it only proper that employers verify citizenship when hiring, then you'll want to visit the Library of Congress database to familiarize yourself with HR 4088. The stated purpose of the bill is "To provide immigration reform by securing America's borders, clarifying and enforcing existing laws, and enabling a practical employer verification program."

It's called the Secure America Through Verification and Enforcement (SAVE) Act of 2007.

Yeah. 2007.

This bill was introduced in November, and has been tied up in committee since December.

Once you've studied this legislation, write your representative and convey your opinion on the act, and on the discharge petition that would bring it out of committee and onto the floor for a vote.

Keep an eye on this issue. The Washington Times reports that the bill's opponents may attempt to add an amnesty clause to the bill if it does get out of committee.

My opinion? Although I sympathize with those who've come here seeking a better life, I can't condone a blanket pardon for those who did so illegally. That many of them are well-behaved and hard-working once they arrive does not alter the fact that if they broke the law to get here they are, by definition, not law-abiding people.

And I have no patience whatsoever for employers who don't bother to verify citizenship. Many claim that illegal immigrants are the only ones who will do "dirty jobs." Nonsense. They're just the only ones who will do such work for a pittance, because they can't complain to the Department of Labor.

True, we are largely* a nation of immigrants. My great-grandparents came into this country through proper channels. Others can, too.

* — 1% of the U.S. population is American Indian or Alaska Native.

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