EDITORIAL: Expanding E-Verify

By NEMS Daily Journal

U.S. Rep. Alan Nunnelee, R-Miss., won inclusion this week in the Energy and Water Appropriation Bill requiring that all programs funded by the bill use the federal E-Verify program to identify illegal aliens seeking jobs.
Nunnelee said the provision would help ensure that Americans seeking employment aren’t displaced by undocumented non-citizens seeking work – a significant factor in virtually every state.
Mississippi, when Nunnelee was in the state Senate, passed a required E-Verify for all employers, including state government. The system, of course, is not perfect, but its use has proven to help all kinds of employers identify applicants who may not be legally employable. The largest disruption of private-sector illegal employment happened when federal agents raided Howard Industries in Laurel, removing scores of illegal workers from their positions.
The Nunnelee amendment will help eliminate illegal employment because no person not cleared by the system can be hired using money provided in the appropriations bill.
“This is a common-sense amendment that simply uses the appropriations process to enforce the E-Verify system that is currently in place. While nearly 14 million Americans are looking for work, research estimates that more than 7 million illegal aliens hold jobs in the U.S. workforce,” Nunnelee said in a statement from his office.
Nunnelee is member of the House Immigration Reform Caucus.
The federal government should use its own program in new employee assessment.
The language Nunnelee inserted is simple and direct: “None of the funds made available under this Act may be expended for any new hire by any Federal agency funded in this Act that is not verified through the E-Verify Program established under section 403(a) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1324a note).”
The parallel Mississippi law, passed in 2008, requires public and private employers to participate in E-Verify with a phased-in period that began in 2008 and will be fully implemented July 1. All government agencies and businesses with more than 250 employees were required to comply by July 1, 2008; companies with 100-250 employees by July 1, 2009, companies with 30-100 employees by July 1, 2010, and the remaining companies by July 1, 2011.
Employment – a more prosperous life – is the driving force for many illegal immigrants, especially Latinos from Mexico, Central America and South America. Their ethnicity is not the issue but their illegality.
Keep the jobs out of reach and the incentive diminishes.