Tale of Two Memos to Congress: One Looks out for American Interests, One for Corporate Greed

Published on February 6th, 2014

Last week Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions sent House Republicans his outline titled “Immigration and the GOP Agenda” that explained why the amnesty bill which they seem determined to pass is a bad deal for struggling, unemployed Americans. In response, Mark Zuckerberg’s lobbying group Forward.us distributed its memo to Congress with the usual self-serving distortions intended to persuade doubters that immigration reform is the nation’s most urgent business.

Here’s a comparison of curricula vitae for Sessions and Zuckerberg.

Jeff SessionsZuckerberg

Sessions earned a J.D. degree from the University of Alabama and has served in the U.S. Senate since 1997. A member of the United States Army Reserve from 1973 to 1986 who ultimately attained the rank of Captain, Sessions currently serves on the Senate Committee on Armed Services, the Committee on Environment and Public Works and the Judiciary Committee. When he’s not fulfilling his Senate duties, Sessions has served as a lay leader and as a Sunday school teacher at his family’s church in Mobile.

Zuckerberg, age 28, is best known for having amassed a $19 billion fortune, thanks to a Facebook public offering. He has no political credentials or expert insights beyond his FB world into the impacts of demography, immigration and population growth. While Zuckerberg is free to lobby for whatever causes he thinks laudable, immigration reform would further enrich him. His advice on amnesty should be seen through that prism.

Sessions’ talking points list irrefutable economic facts that argue against granting a blanket amnesty. Among them are that the number of visas issued would triple legal immigration within a decade, and work authorization would be given to the nation’s 11 million illegal immigrants. Through chain migration, the total of new immigrants eventually admitted would swell to many millions more.

In its retort titled “Summary Background Memo on Broad Support for Immigration Reform,” which also includes a slanderous section on “The Shocking Extremism Behind Anti-Immigrant Groups” that smeared Federation for Immigration Reform, Center for Immigration Studies and NumbersUSA, Forward.us rehashed familiar but false pro-amnesty statistics. Conveniently, those talking points would, if adopted, help the Silicon Valley high-tech industry, including Zuckerberg, bring more cheap labor to the U.S., mostly on H-1B visas.

Included in the Forward.us document were a series of polls, most of which allegedly found support for paths to citizenship, even among self-identified conservative Republicans. Specifically, according to Forward.us, 79 percent of likely Republican primary voters said that it’s “very important” to pass reform legislation. Yet a Gallup poll taken last month found that only 3 percent of Americans think immigration is a priority.

How the polling questions are worded influences the responses. Polls that present loaded questions that include conjecture, such as “assuming the border is secure” or “if immigrants learn English and pay back taxes,” elicit the desired replies, in this case “yes” to amnesty.

The most accurate way to ask about immigration would be to pose the question this way: “Do you favor giving immediate work authorization to 12-20 million illegal immigrants at a time when 20 million Americans can’t find a full-time job and before the border is secure? As part of the same legislation, do you approve of tripling legal immigration within the first decade?”

Go to the CAPS Action Alert page here to tell your representative that amnesty is bad for all Americans.

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