Back from Bakersfield: Report from the Front

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By Joe Guzzardi

Joe is a CAPS Senior Writing Fellow whose commentaries about California's social issues have run in newspapers throughout California and the country for nearly 30 years. Contact Joe at joeguzzardi@capsweb.org, or find him on Twitter @joeguzzardi19.

The writer's views are his own.

August 26, 2013

I’m back from Bakersfield where I spent three days (August 13-15) promoting CAPS’ television and radio spots which alerted local area patriots that House Whip Kevin McCarthy may be wavering on amnesty.

On August 14, Hispanic amnesty advocates held a rally (another one!) outside of McCarthy’s office. Although organizers predicted a crowd of 5,000, only about 1,200 showed up. If you net out the lookie-loos and consider that the well-funded Hispanic lobby bussed people in from Los Angeles, Modesto, Fresno and Stockton, the low turnout had to have been a disappointment. Read the local story, Immigration Rally Keeps Pressure on McCarthy, with quotes from CAPS.

During my three-day stay, I had more than a dozen television and radio interviews that gave me time to expand on CAPS’ message and to warn that on immigration the House is still in flux. Congress has no business even considering legislation that would give legal work permission to 11 million aliens who are not currently authorized to work. With more than 20 million Americans, including blacks, Hispanics, returning veterans, the disabled and recent college graduates unemployed or under-employed, Congress should be focused on creating jobs by enforcing immigration laws, not ignoring them or scrambling around looking for ways to increase immigration.

Since the United Farm Workers had a large presence at the rally, I made one point repeatedly. Farm workers want an immediate path to citizenship without hang ups or delays about border security, but I argued that they should insist on border security. Without it, illegal immigration will never end, a bad thing for those at the rally whether or not they have jobs. For employed Hispanics, a new wave of illegal immigration would include many willing to work for less; for the unemployed, the increase in the labor pool would make it harder to find a job.

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Watch the McCarthy jobs ad and the McCarthy entitlement ad, and read the related press release. Go to the CAPS Legislative Center to FAX your House Representative to reject the Senate bill and say no to amnesty.

 

Bakersfield Immigration Rally, KGET News:

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