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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:25 AM
Original message
Where Democrats need to be on Illegal Immigration:
Edited on Wed Oct-19-05 09:43 AM by txaslftist
The Pukes are playing up "immigration is the greatest threat to our kuntry ever ever ever waaaaah" crap. I heard Rush, Hannity and Reagan at various times in the past week carping on this, and supporting the 'minuteman vigilante initiative' along the border.

I don't recall when it was, but I know that a fax from KKKarl got intercepted and posted here a while back along the lines that immigration needs to be a Puke talking point. Chertoff seems to have gotten the memo, as have the fascist talking heads.

The fact of the matter is that Bush has been deliberately WEAK on illegal immigration, because he thinks the borders should be open. This provides black market labor that can be paid less than minimum wage, to enrich his corporate pals. Illegal immigration has increased drastically under GWB.

Rove correctly identified this as a weakness in the GOP's political position, and correctly identified it as a meme they needed to jump on early and often, in order to 1) distort the actual fact of their failures in this area, and 2) to create an impression that the Republicans will be stronger on anti-immigration measures than the Democrats.

In other words, in perfect Rovean strategory, they are taking a Republican failure, and attempting to make it a Republican campaign asset.

While I generally don't believe that Democrats should take Republican oratorical positions and simply 'out-Republican' them, this is one area where we need to be clear, and our electoral '06 message needs to be loud and clear: "The Republicans have failed to police the border for five years. They have diverted assets from border protection to the war in Iraq and to finance tax cuts for the rich. As a result illegal immigration has increased to the greatest level in US history. Our border is porous and insecure. The Democrats will enforce our border by moving more assets (including national security assets) there to apprehend illegals. We will reduce illegal immigration, and ensure that Mexican Nationals (and immigrants from other countries) here to work are here legally. We will streamline the guest worker program so that Immigrants can get here to legally work earlier, without having to bribe anyone, and with less hassle and less expense."

We will work together with the Mexican Government on border initiatives, in the kind of cooperative arrangements that Bush has spurned since Vicente Fox failed to do as he was told and endorse the Iraq misadventure.

This message will assuage California produce farmers (and many others), who must rely on illegals to pick crops, because they will still have guest workers to do the work. The guest workers will pay payroll taxes, more than making up for the expense of policing the border. It will reduce the dangerous traffic in illegals involving cramped trucks and the like. It will reduce the number of deaths in the deserts of Arizona and New Mexico. It will reduce drug smuggling and it will reduce the threat of terrorists infiltrating from Mexico.

The fundamental position must remain that the Republicans have had five years of one-party rule to address this issue, and are only now taking mere cosmetic steps to fix a problem they have made worse. Democrats can do better, by appointing competent people (instead of the current crony appointments in ICE), and re-assigning assets.

The GOP cannot be permitted to take a colossal FAILURE and turn it into an asset for the '06 campaign.
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Virginian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:34 AM
Response to Original message
1. One error I noted in your post.
"Illegals" does not = Mexicans.

This region has a lot of hispanic "illegals," and most of them are NOT from Mexico, but from further south.

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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. Thanks. I edited based on what you said. Better?
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MemphisTiger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
2. Immigration if fine, just not ILLEGAL immegration
However, who is going to cut their lawn if there are no illegals?
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:44 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. Guest workers. Here legally. Paying taxes. Cutting lawns.
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ret5hd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:39 AM
Response to Original message
3. sorry, i think you are wrong...
opinion:

we don't have an illegal immigration problem. We have an illegal employer problem. We need to have the derision, disgust, and disdain toward illegal employers that others have towards undocumented workers. They should be fined and imprisoned. They should be the subject of public ridicule.

Why do we, even here on DU, always speak of an immigration problem but rarely speak ill of the employers (essentially slave owners) that are often the WORST of the lot---poultry processors, peach orchards, janitorial services---that provide NO healthcare, NO vacation, terrible wages, terrible working conditions, etc etc etc.

To those that choose to focus on the WORKER (who you would NEVER choose to trade places with) rather than the employer (slave owner)...piss on ya'. You are a bigot and a part of the problem. The WORKER is one of US...the employer is one of THEM...the one making the money off the sweat of an underpaid exploited group...in other words a Repub scumbag.

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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:47 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. You are right about employers, but that is not inconsistent...
...with border protection. I certainly agree we ought to go after employers of illegals. I work in federal court, and the feds almost exclusively go after the aliens, not their employers. One prosecutor refuses to take immigration cases because of that.

The penalties for knowingly employing illegals are already on the books, they just need to be enforced. This is an additional area the Dems need to hit on. Thank you!
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ret5hd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:57 AM
Response to Reply #6
12. as i said...
<snip>
To those that choose to focus on the WORKER (who you would NEVER choose to trade places with) rather than the employer (slave owner)...piss on ya'. You are a bigot and a part of the problem. The WORKER is one of US...the employer is one of THEM...the one making the money off the sweat of an underpaid exploited group...in other words a Repub scumbag.
</snip>

not necessarily directed at you, just making absolutely sure my position is crystal clear...the WORKERS are one of US...as such, they are my brothers and sisters.
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #12
17. You don't think it is better for the worker...
...to have access to a simple and quick process for getting into this country legally, to work at better wages without fear of sudden apprehension and jail time, to be able to come here and work without paying bribes or paying a smuggler $1,000.00 to cross and another $200.00 for false papers?

I don't see my position as bigoted, but as helpful to him. They are our brothers and sisters, and they deserve a better approach.
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liberal43110 Donating Member (687 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:24 PM
Response to Reply #17
28. Take part of your message, and combine it with ret5hd's
Your part about claiming that the Republicans have utterly failed on border security is correct.

Why have the Republicans failed on this? Because they are in bed with the corporations that solicit illegal immigrants to work for sub-standard wages in factories and in bed with big-agribusiness, which wants illegals to work the fields across the US.

I am not in favor of a guest worker program. Not because I am a racist or a bigot. Illegal immigrants do take jobs from people legally living in America--because if we enforced our immigration and labor laws companies and farms would be forced to increase wages to attract and retain employees.

A guest worker program facilitates the Wal-Martization of American business: big companies that pay subsistence wages to millions of employees and force the US government to pay for Medicaid instead of offering decent medical benefits.

Border security is directly tied to progressive labor policy.
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MemphisTiger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:55 AM
Response to Reply #3
11. In defense of employers, sometimes illegal aliens
pay hundreds of dollars for a very good fake green card. I used to work at a construction company and we couldn't tell the real ones from the fake ones. They produced documentation and we kept it on file when one of our crews was busted. However, the employers that know good and well that they are not legal should go to jail. You know the ones that pay them cash with no paper trail.
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ret5hd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:00 AM
Response to Reply #11
13. The employer could tell it to the judge...
i feel no sympathy for them. Is any sympathy felt for the legal immigrant that gets caught up in a INS raid? Hardly! They get their chance to tell it to the judge, and that's all.

So...tell it to the judge.
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MemphisTiger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:08 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. They do
We had to bring the copies we made of their green cards and ID cards to the authorities.
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ret5hd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:16 AM
Response to Reply #14
18. Then everything is okee dokee...
doesn't the gov't make available a database to check green card/SS# validity...but then decided against making its use mandatory...because it would be to much work for the employer? I'm pretty sure it did. In fact, i'm pretty damn sure. Did you use it?
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MemphisTiger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 11:01 AM
Response to Reply #18
21. I wasn't doing the hiring...
but it was several years ago. I don't know anything about a database. We just kept the documentation and paid them like an actual employee and not cash. Maybe the IRS caught on to them.
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unlawflcombatnt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #13
25. No Sympathy for Employers
I agree completely. I have no sympathy for the "poor" employer who claims "I didn't know." It should be up to them to verify that workers are legal. And that's as simple as calling the Social Security Administration and verifying that the Social Security number belongs to the person who is presenting it to them. If employers don't do this, it's their own fault for not knowing.

unlawflcombatnt
EconomicPopulistCommentary
___________
The economy needs balance between the "means of production" & "means of consumption."
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joefree1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:49 AM
Response to Original message
7. Legalize guest workers, close the borders
Why do some want to complicate this issue?

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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. How about this:
streamline guest workers, close the borders, prosecute employers of illegals.
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joefree1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:52 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. Works for me
Okay, now about global warming ...
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #10
15. Boy howdy do you love to pick a fight!
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 12:32 PM
Response to Reply #7
23. And don't forget to highlight that this is a REPUBLICAN FAILURE!!
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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:50 AM
Response to Original message
9. Politically, this is an issue just there for the taking....
The Repubs are very weak and divided on this issue. Democrats do not have to do anything except point out that the Repubs have done nothing and they would politically win on this issue. That does not mean they should do nothing but, politically, they don't have to. They only have to point the Republican failure.
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FloridaPat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:10 AM
Response to Original message
16. We're exporting so many jobs, it's amazing people are still coming here.
After they export all the computer jobs, they will probably start on the next level. Soon there won't be any jobs to export or have illegal or legal people to come in.
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 12:31 PM
Response to Reply #16
22. It is still a lot better here than in Mexico and Latin America.
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sadiesworld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:43 PM
Response to Reply #22
29. Unfortunately, Mexico and Latin America are not being
raised to meet US standards (CAFTA will exascerbate the problem), rather WE are being dragged down to the level of Mexio and Latin America. This is unacceptable.

All a guest worker program will accomplish will be to institutionalize slave labor wages. The only real result will be to remove any (small) fear an employer may have of being busted for hiring illegal immigrants.

Your proposal sounds JUST like *'s. Maybe we could actually offer an alternative? I support enforcing our immigration laws. If the (large) majority of the people in this country want those laws enforced, I believe they are entitled to have them enforced. Removing consequences for employers IS NOT a step in the right direction :eyes:.
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progressivejazz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:39 AM
Response to Original message
19. Right on!
The Repubs will make this their main campaign issue if the Democrats don't take it away from them preemptively as you state. It can be framed in a national security context, and that's just what the Repubs will do; purporting to show that they are protecting America and the Democrats aren't.

And it's so simple:

First, as you say, point out they've failed miserably for five years when they were in total control.

Second, come up with a plan that fines employers enough that they won't hire illegals, but that protects legal aliens, similar to the Barbara Jordan plan. The beauty of this is that the fines would pay for the enforcement.


With illegals no longer flooding into the country, border security would be much simpler--we could really focus on keeping out terrorists and their weapons. That makes the Democrats the party that's strong on protecting America.


From what I hear from my nonpolitical friends this is a very big issue; the party that addresses this issue first in a plausible way will pick up huge numbers of votes from average American citizens.
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:54 AM
Response to Reply #19
20. Yep, we need to be on this YESTERDAY.
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unlawflcombatnt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:47 PM
Response to Original message
24. Prosecute Employers
The most effective way to reduce illegal immigration is to vigorously prosecute the employers that hire them. That needs to be the very 1st step taken, before we start allowing guest workers. Republicans haven't this because they don't want to upset their big campaign donors who actively undercut American workers by hiring cheaper illegal immigrants.

Before we start changing any laws, or creating any new ones, we should try enforcing the ones we already have. Especially those against employers who hire illegal immigrants.

unlawflcombatnt
EconomicPopulistCommentary
___________
The economy needs balance between the "means of production" & "means of consumption."
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:47 PM
Response to Reply #24
26. Yeah, but with fraudulent documents, it's hard to prove mens rea.
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unlawflcombatnt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:21 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. Knowingly Accepting Forged Documents
Banks can verify Social Security numbers in less than 60 seconds. It might take an employer a little longer, but it can still be done easily. All that's really needed is for the employer to verify conclusively that the Social Security number that the worker presents belongs to that worker. If it is forged, it will not be verifiable.

We need to quit allowing employers to cover themselves with knowingly falsified documents. Many employers knowingly hire illegal aliens because they know they are protected by documents they know are forged. That needs to change. Again, cracking down on employers is the first thing we need to do.

The only successful way to stop illegal immigration is to eliminate the demand for illegal immigrant labor. That means going after the employers who create that demand. As long as that demand exists, illegal immigrants will flock into the country. Increasing border security will do little to change this. But a significant increase in border security wouldn't even be necessary if we prosecuted employers. They'd simply stop hiring illegals. And our problems with illegal immigration would decrease, if not completely disappear.

unlawflcombatnt
EconomicPopulistCommentary
___________
The economy needs balance between the "means of production" & "means of consumption."
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