Obama’s Legacy Not Iran or Cuba but Forsaking American Workers

Published on April 13th, 2015

By Joe Guzzardi
April 13, 2015

Last weekend in Panama, President Obama met with Cuban President Raul Castro in what the two leaders and the media called a historic moment. Obama hopes to normalize the U.S. relationship with Cuba, but has encountered significant congressional push back, namely on human rights issues. Restrictions on certain trade and travel sanctions have been lifted, but the economic embargo remains and only Congress can remove it.

Congress knows the concessions Obama is willing to make that will benefit Cuba, but has yet to hear how the U.S. will gain from any new understanding. Forging strong ties with Cuba, which has been on the U.S. terrorist list since 1982, is one part of what Obama hopes will represent his legacy.

The president also hopes that his nuclear deal with Iran will cement his historic place among American leaders. The ultimate success of Obama’s dealings with Cuba and Iran will not be known for years, possibly decades. But on the domestic front, Obama’s legacy is irreversibly set in stone: the president dismantled immigration law, and in so doing rejected Americans in favor of aliens and their lobby. The consequences include depressed wages and diminished job prospects for the native-born.

The evidence is overwhelming and beyond reasonable dispute. Earlier this year, Senator Jeff Sessions compiled a 50-page report that chronicled Obama’s immigration violations which began in 2009 and continue today, unabated. Senator Sessions’ most recent report added 100 offenses to his original 2014 memo.

Beginning immediately after his January 2009 inauguration, Obama ended worksite enforcement, and delayed E-Verify’s implementation for federal contractors. Workplace enforcement and E-Verify are vital cogs that serve to protect Americans from losing their jobs to unlawful immigrants. Between 2009 and 2015, Obama violated immigration law in dozens of ways up to and including his unconstitutional executive amnesty action last year that will grant work permits, social security numbers and welfare benefits to about 5 million aliens.

Since Obama took office, removals from the interior have plunged 58 percent, and the latest ICE data show that deportations in the last three months have plunged 43 percent compared to last year. Included among those not deported but instead released into the general public are 165,900 convicted criminal aliens. Of special note: not one administration official or pro-amnesty advocate has challenged these findings.

The effect on working and unemployed Americans of Obama’s dereliction of his duty to enforce immigration law and reward aliens with work permission is staggering. From a wealth of demoralizing economic statistics that reflect what’s befallen Americans since Obama’s election, consider these: weekly earnings are lower than they were in 1973, 48 million live in poverty, and for the 36th consecutive month, more than 46 million received food stamps all while income inequality has risen steadily.

Almost one in four Americans age 21-54 does not have a job, and more than eight million want but cannot find a full-time employment. As of March, the month in which the economy created only 126,000 jobs, more than 93 million Americans are detached from the labor force. According to the Economic Policy Institute, a surplus of workers exist in every job category. Yet struggling Americans must compete with work-authorized aliens as well as the annual inflow of one million legal immigrants who as permanent residents automatically receive employment authorization documents.

This week, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments that may decide the fate of Obama’s executive action, temporarily on hold. Every American has a stake in the court’s ruling. If Obama’s action is allowed to proceed, the glutted U.S. labor market will suddenly be overwhelmed with five million more workers. Americans can’t withstand a labor influx of that magnitude, but Obama apparently couldn’t care less.

Joe Guzzardi is a Californians for Population Stabilization Senior Writing Fellow. Contact him at [email protected]

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