E-Verify Back on the Table, a Must-Pass Bill to Help American Workers and Deter Illegal Immigration

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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.

March 17, 2017

Many among President Donald Trump’s supporters wonder why he spends so little time on less challenging, less controversial immigration goals. An example is E-Verify, the free and easy online program that confirms whether an employee is legally authorized to work in the United States. With an estimated 8 million illegal aliens in the labor market sector, mandatory E-Verify would free up most of those jobs for Americans.

More than 700,000 employers nationwide participate in E-Verify.

Congress has kicked E-Verify around for 20 years since it was first introduced as Basic Pilot. During those 20 years, objections to E-Verify have been debunked. The claim that employers found it cumbersome turned out to be false; 92 percent of E-Verify users found it effective. The charge that E-Verify is too expensive for employers to implement – false. About 83 percent reported no cost increases directly related to maintaining an E-Verify program. The allegation that E-Verify eligibility checks are error-prone – false. Based on 24 million E-Verify cases processed in fiscal year 2013, 99 percent were confirmed as work authorized either instantly or within 24 hours.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Chuck Grassley recently introduced a mandatory E-Verify bill, S 179, the Accountability Through Electronic Verification Act. E-Verify would remove the jobs magnet that has encouraged decades of illegal immigration and would penalize employers who defy the new law.

In a Republican-controlled House, Senate and White House, E-Verify should easily pass. Even Democrats, especially at-risk incumbents, would be hard pressed to defend their nay votes which voters would correctly interpret as their favoring illegal immigrants getting jobs while Americans are passed over.

Please go to the CAPS Action Alert page here to urge your senator to support S 179.


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