Nowhere, and I mean absolutely nowhere, in any of the debate over immigration reform has the role of the employers been addressed.
If the GOP or its Tea Party caucus wanted illegal immigration to end tomorrow, all they would need to do is pass legislation that:
1. Made it illegal to knowingly hire undocumented workers (even if you are running for President, for Pete's sake), and
2. Stripped repeat offenders of their citizenship, any property or assets related to the hiring of the undocumented workers, and booted them out of the country.
Below the Orange Elegance . . .
Right now, all the discussion is about how much to punish undocumented workers: How much of a fine should they have to pay? How much in back taxes do they owe?
There is no discussion of fines or penalties for their employers. Why not?
We know that it's not liberals who are hiring the vast majority of undocumented workers. It's farmers, construction companies, restaurants, hotel chains, etc., all of them owned and operated by Republicans. [There are rare exceptions: Liberal churches who provide sanctuary and jobs, only to be vilified for their efforts.]
And the Republicans all know that they are hiring undocumented workers, and that's the way they like it. Want to complain about working conditions? Don't like how your pay has been cut? Take it to la migra.
So of course Republicans don't want to talk about employer sanctions; they want to deify employers -- excuse me, "job creators" -- without whom we would all be lost and hopeless.
But what is the Democrats excuse? I can't think of one.
For now, there is absolutely no incentive for Republicans to vote for any type of immigration reform. Why should they want the current situation to change? They've got the best of all possible worlds: labor is cheap and has no rights whatsoever (a condition they'd love to extend to all of us), and they have a boogeyman they can point to whenever they like.
Any proposal to reform immigration that doesn't grant citizenship rights to the workers is an extension of the Southern ideal, cited in many an act of secession in 1861: The right of a small class of owners to live as gentleman, off the labor of their inferiors.
To push back against the immiseration of workers that Republicans crave, I'm going to petition my Congresscritters to sponsor and support the Comprehensive Undocumented Workers Reform Act of 2013:
1. The willful and knowing employment of undocumented workers being a national security and economic threat, anyone who knowingly employs one or more undocumented aliens shall be imprisoned for not less than 3 years, and not more than 7 years, per undocumented alien employed. In addition, any property associated with the employment of undocumented aliens shall be siezed and sold at auction to defray the societal costs of supporting undocumented aliens.Mine is off to Dick Durbin (D-Big Business) and Rodney Davis (R-Big Business) tomorrow.
2. Any person who willfully and knowingly employs undocumented aliens on more than one occasion will be stripped of their United States citizenship and deported from the United States.