Sunday, February 4, 2018

Where Is the Push for E-Verify?

In the immigration debate, both parties have kept an important policy off the negotiating table.
Something besides good faith is missing from the ongoing immigration negotiations. Republicans want to pair an amnesty for the “Dreamers” with enforcement measures that would tighten the immigration system. But conspicuously absent from their wish list is E-Verify, an electronic system through which an employer can ascertain whether a job applicant is in the country legally. E-Verify already exists, but using it is not mandatory — and nobody, even among the most restrictionist Republicans, is demanding that it become so.
It would seem a natural demand to make. Any amnesty could send a signal that we are unwilling to enforce our immigration laws, thereby encouraging more border crossings. Since most illegal immigrants come here to work, E-Verify would counter that signal — and it could encourage some of the current stock of illegal immigrants to return home, too. The measure also happens to be popular, with more than 75 percent of Americans supporting it in both 2012 and 2016
But Republicans have asked for other measures instead. Last week, the White House asked for wall funding, the curtailing of chain migration (once a backlog is cleared), and the end to the diversity visa lottery in exchange for an amnesty of 1.8 million Dreamers.
Democrats rejected the proposal out of hand, but that doesn’t mean Republicans will reconsider E-Verify. In the context of a Dreamer deal, maximalist Democrats are just as opposed to internal enforcement as they are to changes to border security or chain migration. Daniel Costa, a policy analyst for the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute, says Democrats “oppose the measure in the context of not legalizing the current undocumented population.”
Read the rest from Theodore Kupfer HERE.

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