By Joe Guzzardi
April 24, 2014
On Good Friday, seven influential mainstream media outlets published passionate comprehensive immigration reform pleas thinly disguised as news stories. The Wall Street Journal reported that House Speaker John Boehner told a Las Vegas fundraiser crowd that he’s “hell bent” on passing a mass amnesty this year. Earlier, Capitol Hill insiders’ rumored that Boehner would wait until the GOP primary season ended before accelerating his amnesty push.
The rumors now appear to be true. Suddenly, Republicans are chasing money in Democratic pro-amnesty strongholds. Not only did Boehner travel to Harry Reid territory, last month House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte held a Silicon Valley fundraiser, turf where amnesty advocate extraordinaire, multibillionaire Mark Zuckerberg reigns supreme. The Journal quoted Goodlatte as saying he’s “optimistic” that immigration bills will pass this summer.
The most controversial of Friday’s stories, however, dealt with Jessica Colotl, an employed illegal immigrant, a college graduate arrested for driving without a license. Sent to an Alabama detention center, Colotl’s deportation proceedings were halted after her alma mater’s president intervened. According to journalist Cynthia Tucker, even though Colotl wasn’t and won’t be deported, the administration’s policy is “inhumane.”
Tucker’s conclusion is mystifying. Colotl has committed several crimes. She entered the U.S. illegally, falsified documents, used those fake documents to get a job, and drove illegally. Furthermore, Colotl benefited from a taxpayer funded Kennesaw State University education.
Under the law, Colotl is deportable. Worse, Colotl works for an immigration lawyer, Charles Kuck, who told Tucker that President Obama is “breaking up families,” the popular but tired and untrue old saw that advocates love to use. According to John Sandweg, until recently the acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, for a typical illegal immigrant, the odds of getting deported “are close to zero.”
Even atypical criminal aliens are safe. On Obama’s watch, DHS has released 68,000 convicted and deportable jailed aliens back into the general population. Worse, the aliens were released without formal notification to local law enforcement or to the inmates’ victims.
Kuck, for his role in hiring Colotl, should be disbarred. Section 274 of the Immigration and Nationality Act states that any person who encourages or induces an alien to live in the U.S. is subject to fines and potentially five years imprisonment.
As outrageous as Tucker’s story is, of more importance are the readers’ online comments. When I first read them, more than 2,500 had been posted. Not until I reached the 30th did a see any that supported Colotl. As of today, nearly 5,000 have weighed in. More than 80 percent overwhelmingly oppose Colotl, Tucker’s views, illegal immigration, expanding legal immigration and granting more entitlements to illegal immigrants.
The readers’ disappointed, often disgusted tone confirms that no matter what lies the White House or Congress may tell the nation—that immigration reform would improve the economy, create jobs and reduce the deficit are the favorites fibs—Americans don’t buy it. They know that Congress’ immigration bill would immediately add 12 million new workers, the current U.S. alien population unemployable because of their immigration status that would receive employment authorization, and would more than double legal immigration within a decade.
The so called reform that the White House and Congress tout is a terrible deal for Americans. If legislation passes, 20 million unemployed and underemployed Americans would have a tougher job search. Many employed Americans, especially those in blue collar jobs, would be vulnerable to wage undercutting.
But the attitude on Capitol Hill reflects gross indifference to what Americans want, a sad comment on today’s troubling political reality.
Joe Guzzardi is a Californians for Population Stabilization Senior Writing Fellow whose columns have been syndicated since 1987. Contact him at [email protected]