October 25, 2016

Unless my math has gotten even worse that it was in school, Republican SOS, Brian Kemp, spent $48,119.00 on videos in foreign languages to help non-English speakers vote in Georgia

Posted by D.A. King at 10:16 am - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  

To the astonishment of many Georgia conservatives and to the glee of the illegal alien lobby, Georgia’s Secretary of State, Brian Kemp, produced five videos in foreign languages ( Spanish, Vietnamese, Hindi, Korean, and Mandarin) to help non-English speakers “on voter registration, absentee voting by mail, advance in-person voting, and Election Day voting.”

“These new resources will help voters who are non-English speakers know how to register to vote and prepare to cast their ballot” says Kemp. “Georgia is not a ‘covered jurisdiction’ under the federal Voting Rights Act to offer election information in other languages,” Kemp’s press release told us.

Insider Advantage Georgia took note of Kemp’s surprising move and I wrote it up in several Georgia newspapers, including the Macon Telegraph. I noted that Kemp had also lent his name and the prestige of his office to the GALEO Inc. illegal alien lobby at at fundraiser gala last year.

Also in the Macon Telegraph today ( “Time to make English the official language of Georgia” ) State Senator Josh McKoon reminded Georgians that while there is an “an extremely weak and all but ignored 1996 law says that English is Georgia’s official language” on the books. “But with 10 foreign languages used for our driver’s license exam and foreign language videos for voter registration, it is obvious that more must be done to insure the commonsense unity and voting security that official English provides.” McKoon writes. We agree. After passing the state senate with the required two-thirds majority, Senator McKoon’s effort to allow all Georgia voters to consider a ballot question on amending the state constitution to official English in this year’s election was killed in the GOP House. Hello, state Rep Wendell Willard.

Quanto costa?

The question on many minds around the state was about the monetary cost of these videos to taxpayers – or as they may say in the Georgia Secretary of State’s office “quanto costa?”

Our friend, Ye Sun Whiltse sent an open records request to the SOS office asking that very question. But in English. Ye Sun’s letter:

October 11, 2016

Open records request

To: Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp
214 State Capitol
Atlanta, GA 30334
404-656-2881

Secretary Kemp,

As an active Republican voter, a proud naturalized American citizen and retired U.S. Army veteran, I am disappointed to learn that you have spent tax dollars to produce multiple foreign language videos aimed at potential voters who do not speak or understand the English language. Most school children and all naturalized Americans understand that with very few exceptions, the ability to speak, read and understand simple English is a requirement for naturalization, and that it is a crime for non-citizens to vote in Georgia elections.

I am requesting all documents that discuss or illustrate the cost of the video production of recently released voter registration assistance videos done in the Hindi, Korean, Spanish, Mandarin and Vietnamese languages under Georgia’s open records law.

I may expand this request in the near future, but for the time being, I look forward to your timely reply as set forth in state law.

Feel free to contact me with any questions.

Thank you,

Ye Sun Wiltse

Evans, Georgia 30809

Yesterday, Ye Son received a timely reply, complete with two invoices from the video production contractors.

Unless my math has gotten even worse that it was in school, Republican Brian Kemp spent $ 48,119.00 on videos in foreign languages to help non-English speakers vote in Georgia. Huh…

You can see all of Kemp’s videos HERE.

Open records request: How much did SOS Brian Kemp’s foreign language voter assistance videos cost Georgia taxpayers?

Posted by D.A. King at 9:43 am - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  

October 11, 2016

Open records request

To: Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp
214 State Capitol
Atlanta, GA 30334
404-656-2881

Secretary Kemp,

As an active Republican voter, a proud naturalized American citizen and retired U.S. Army veteran, I am disappointed to learn that you have spent tax dollars to produce multiple foreign language videos aimed at potential voters who do not speak or understand the English language. Most school children and all naturalized Americans understand that with very few exceptions, the ability to speak, read and understand simple English is a requirement for naturalization, and that it is a crime for non-citizens to vote in Georgia elections.

I am requesting all documents that discuss or illustrate the cost of the video production of recently released voter registration assistance videos done in the Hindi, Korean, Spanish, Mandarin and Vietnamese languages under Georgia’s open records law.

I may expand this request in the near future, but for the time being, I look forward to your timely reply as set forth in state law.

Feel free to contact me with any questions.

Thank you,

Ye Sun Wiltse

Evans, Georgia 30809

October 24, 2016

Response from Georgia Secretary of State, Brian Kemp, on open records request concerning cost to taxpayers for his foreign language voter assistance videos

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October 21, 2016

D.A. King in the Bucks County, PA Times Courier: On immigration, enforcement and facts matter

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Bucks County Times Courier

On immigration, enforcement and facts matter

October 21, 2016
D.A. King

In his recent opinion piece on Donald Trump ( Deporting migrant workers and economic output  October 11, 2016 & pasted below), the crime of illegal immigration and the concept that we should not enforce our immigration laws, Theodore Cohen omits much and in my view gets a lot very wrong. Perhaps the most amusing is the premise that if we do not continue to use black-market labor on American farms, strawberries will vanish from our stores, or they will cost — wait for it … $20 a pound.

Cohen tells us of the profitable days of his youth shoveling snow and then tells us those happy times are over for American youth because commercial services are using illegal labor. And he doesn’t want that scenario to change.

It is not clear why he isn’t outraged that the crime of illegal immigration has stolen the opportunity for 21st century youth to live their American dream of “big coin” shoveling snow.

All Americans should honor and defend real immigrants. By federal definition, that sacred term applies to individuals who enter the United States lawfully with the intention of permanent residence. Illegal aliens are not “immigrants” and strawberries or not, intentionally blurring the line between the two groups is shameful.

More U.S. workers would do American farm work if earnings were higher, but a wage increase doesn’t seem to be on the horizon. But we still don’t need illegal workers.

Cohen doesn’t mention that agriculture is the only industry in the nation with its own temporary worker visa. The H2A Ag visa allows U.S. farmers to import an unlimited (no ceiling) number of legal, temporary, foreign workers. The rub here for many in the Ag business is that these H2A workers must be fairly paid. The illegal workers are cheaper.

Cohen’s baseless claim on the cost of lawfully produced strawberries seems to have been plucked out of thin air — or tossed out by the Ag lobby. We respectfully point him to the fact that labor costs represent a very small portion of the retail price of fruit.

According to Philip Martin, labor economist at the University of California, Davis, writing in the New York Times (Dec., 2011): “For a typical household, a 40 percent increase in farm labor costs translates into a 3.6 percent increase in retail prices. If farm wages rose 40 percent, and this wage increase were passed on to consumers, average spending on fresh fruits and vegetables would rise about $15 a year, the cost of two movie tickets. However, for a typical seasonal farm worker, a 40 percent wage increase could raise earnings from $10,000 for 1,000 hours of work to $14,000 — lifting the wage above the federal poverty line.”

Finally, Cohen cites unproven “the sky is falling” reports about the results of state bills aimed at illegal immigration, echoing his “no more strawberries for you!” fable. One claim focused on the 2011 passage of legislation — House Bill 87 — in my home state of Georgia as evidence to support the anti-enforcement agenda.

House Bill 87 was aimed at protecting jobs, benefits and services for legal residents, including immigrants — like my adopted sister. Fact: Georgia has more illegal aliens than Arizona.

The heart of HB 87 was the requirement for use of the no-cost federal employment verification system, E-Verify, for nearly all employers in Georgia, with the intention of driving illegals out of the state. It’s working. The number of illegals has declined. Many more growers are now using the H2A visa for labor needs.

Agriculture is Georgia’s No. 1 industry. In early 2011, to no one’s surprise, the anti-borders mob screamed in the streets that if put into law, HB 87 would encourage “racial profiling,” create second class “citizens” and would harm the state’s economy, particularly the agricultural industry. “No more peaches,” we were told.

Fast forward: According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Georgia’s agricultural exports reached an estimated $3 billion in 2013, up from $1.8 billion in 2009.

Since 2011 and passage of HB 87, Georgia been declared “the No. 1 state in which to do business” three times by the influential Site Selection magazine.

Facts matter.

D.A. King, a nationally recognized authority on immigration, is president of the Georgia-based, non-profit Dustin Inman Society. He assisted with creation and passage of Georgia’s House Bill 87 in 2011. www.TheDustinInmanSociety.org. Through early voting, he has voted for Donald Trump for president.   HERE

___

Original article

Deporting migrant workers and economic output

October 11, 2016

Theodore Cohen

As a boy growing up in the Midwest, March blizzards brought closed schools, hours of sledding, and opportunities for my brother, Ron, and me to earn big bucks shoveling our neighbors’ driveways and sidewalks. It wasn’t unusual for us to earn $50 in a day, big coin for two teenagers in the early ’50s. Now, in Middletown, the snow is removed by a service that employs foreign labor … good, hard-working people from “south of the border.”

All that would change in an administration run by Mr. Trump, who repeatedly has stated plans to deport all 11 million undocumented immigrants living in this country if he becomes president. He reiterated this proposal on his first day as the presumptive Republican presidential nominee. [Note: at this writing, this still appears to be his position, though one never knows from day to day, given his wishy-washy position on the subject.] Setting aside the cost to implement such a plan — some estimates put the cost per immigrant at $10,000, making the total cost around $110 billion — one has to wonder whether the candidate has considered the consequences of such an action. After all, in Mr. Trump’s mind, these 11 million immigrants are nothing but criminals, drug dealers, and rapists, right? Wrong!

For better or for worse, the U.S. economy depends on foreign labor far more than most of us realize. To give you an idea of what would happen if even a small portion of the immigrants Mr. Trump wants to deport are actually sent home, consider what’s already happened in several states that cracked down on their immigrant populations. I’m not talking about deporting individuals or families; I’m referring to laws that affected their ability to work. For example, in 2011, the year after Arizona enacted SB 1070, or the “show me your papers” law, the state’s tourism industry lost $250 million and 3,000 jobs (after all, who do you think cleans the rooms, buses the tables, washes the dishes, and maintains the grounds at the state’s hotels and motels?). Alabama passed a similar law in 2011 (HB 56). The result? Because of a shortage of labor, work on farms and in factories across the state slowed so dramatically that the annual economic damage was estimated at about $11 billion.

And when Georgia enacted HB 87 in 2011 (an anti-immigration law that mirrors Arizona’s ill-fated 2010 law, SB 1070), it made life difficult for the undocumented migrant workers who normally would have helped to harvest that state’s fruits and vegetables. The loss of these workers — who quickly moved out of state — caused Georgia to lose as much as $1 billion in agricultural output alone as crops rotted in the field. Some farmers went bankrupt while others cut back on their plantings. As well, many small communities that relied on the money and consumption power of migrant workers withered.

Today, according to TakePart, prisoners are increasingly called upon to harvest what we’ve been putting on our tables, from “… Vidalia onions in Georgia to watermelons in Arizona to apples in Washington to the potatoes of southern Idaho.” Taken together, the impact of the various state laws to address undocumented immigrants has been to severely impact state revenues, lower farm output, and reduce tourism while, at the same time, raising the cost of produce for you and me.

The problem is not going to be resolved anytime soon, regardless of what is done vis-à-vis immigration. It should be obvious that Americans aren’t willing to take the more difficult farm jobs while Hispanics, who traditionally have worked in this area, are moving on to better paying jobs in packing plants and other industrial areas. This, of course, has forced labor costs to rise, which translates into higher food costs.

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Now consider what could happen if Mr. Trump, upon being elected president, fulfills his plan to deport 11 million undocumented immigrants. How does $20 for a pound of strawberries sound on your next trip to the supermarket … assuming you can even find some to purchase?

HERE

Theodore J. Cohen, Ph.D., of Middletown is a novelist and short-story writer. He spent more than 40 years in Washington, watching what went on inside the Beltway first

October 20, 2016

Hearing scheduled: Letter from Immigration Enforcement Review Board, Re; My complaints against City of Atlanta – separate from the complaint sent to the Georgia Attorney General

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October 13, 2016

New York Times – Opinion – The Costs and Benefits of a Raise for Field Workers

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New York Times

The Costs and Benefits of a Raise for Field Workers

Philip Martin

Philip Martin, a labor economist at the University of California, Davis, is the author, most recently, of “Importing Poverty? Immigration and the Changing Face of Rural America.”

UPDATED SEPTEMBER 30, 2011

Americans spend relatively little on food, and relatively little of what they spend represents the cost of farm workers.

If farm wages rose 40 percent, each household would spend about $15 more a year, and each seasonal farm worker would be lifted above the federal poverty line.
In 2009, the total food budget for the average household was $6,400, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Expenditure Survey. About 60 percent of food spending was for food eaten at home. Of that, the largest expenditures were for meat and poultry, an average of $841 a year. Spending on fresh fruits ($220) and fresh vegetables ($209) totaled $429; the average household spent more on alcoholic beverages, $435.

Even when packing costs for fresh produce are negligible — strawberries are packed directly into the containers in which they are sold, and iceberg lettuce gets its film wrapper in the field — farmers and farm workers receive only a small share of the grocery store sticker price. In 2006, farmers received an average of 30 percent of the retail price of fresh fruits and 25 percent of the retail price of fresh vegetables, so consumer expenditures on fresh produce meant $118 to the farmer. Farm labor costs are typically less than a third of farm revenue for fresh fruits and vegetables, meaning that farm worker wages and benefits for fresh fruits and vegetables cost the average household $38 a year.

Consumers who pay $1 for a pound of apples are giving 30 cents to the farmer and 10 cents to the farm worker; those spending $2 for a head of lettuce are giving 50 cents to the farmer and 16 cents to the farm worker.

If the influx of immigrant workers were slowed or stopped and farm wages rose, what would happen to expenditures on fresh fruits and vegetables? A case study from 1966 could give us some idea.

That year, the United Farm Workers union won a 40 percent wage increase for some table grape harvesters, largely because the end of the Bracero program had cut off a supply of Mexican workers. The average earnings of U.S. field workers were $10.07 an hour in 2009, according to a U.S.D.A. survey of farm employers. If pressure to verify employees’ legal status resulted in a labor crisis similar to the one in 1966 and a similar 40 percent wage increase, average hourly earnings would rise to $14.10. If this were passed on to consumers, the 10 cent farm labor cost of a pound of apples would rise to 14 cents, and the $1 retail price would rise to $1.04.

For a typical household, a 40 percent increase in farm labor costs translates into a 3.6 percent increase in retail prices. If farm wages rose 40 percent, and this wage increase were passed on to consumers, average spending on fresh fruits and vegetables would rise about $15 a year, the cost of two movie tickets. However, for a typical seasonal farm worker, a 40 percent wage increase could raise earnings from $10,000 for 1,000 hours of work to $14,000 — lifting the wage above the federal poverty line. HERE

D.A.King in the Macon Telegraph today – Foreign language voter assistance latest move by Georgia’s Secretary of State

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Macon Telegraph

Opinion

October 13, 2016

Foreign language voter assistance latest move by Georgia’s Secretary of State

D.A. King

 

What if you don’t understand simple English but want to vote in Georgia? No problem! A recent press release from Secretary of State Brian Kemp proudly boasts of his “new video tutorials in English, Hindi, Korean, Mandarin, Spanish and Vietnamese on voter registration, absentee voting by mail, advance in-person voting, and Election Day voting.”

“These new resources will help voters who are non-English speakers know how to register to vote and prepare to cast their ballot” says Kemp. “Georgia is not a “covered jurisdiction” under the federal Voting Rights Act to offer election information in other languages” Kemp tells us.

For now, actual ballots are still printed in English.

Most schoolchildren and all naturalized Americans understand that with very few exceptions, the ability to speak and understand simple English is a requirement for naturalization — and that it is a crime for non-citizens to vote in Georgia elections.

This writer phoned the Gold Dome office of Secretary Kemp last week for answers to a few questions, but the promised return call never came. So, maybe readers will have enough curiosity on the topic to call themselves. The phone number for the Georgia Secretary of State’s office is 404-656-2881.

One of the questions in mind was why Secretary Kemp limited his executive pronouncement to include only five foreign languages. Why not French, German or Somali? Why not Cantonese?

Why not at least match the “it’s good for business” inclusiveness of Gov. Deal’s Department of Driver Services, which has been issuing drivers licenses to illegal aliens since July of 2012 and offers the written drivers license exam in 10 foreign languages?

Indeed, why not fast forward and officially convert Georgia into a welcoming place to live, do business and vote by accommodating every language? If we are going to voluntarily cater to non-English speaking voters, why not all of them?

To no one’s surprise, the leftists in the illegal alien lobby were quick to offer their gratitude and applause for Kemp’s progressiveness. Along with the Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Jerry Gonzalez of the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials Corp. (GALEO) immediately sent out his own hopeful press release.

“We hope this is the beginning of the Secretary of State’s Office offering more in-language voter education materials and continue to support Asian Americans, Latinos, and all people of color as we carry on our fight for full access to participation in American democracy.”

Corporate-funded GALEO is widely recognized as Georgia’s most visibly tribalist and extreme advocacy group against official English and enforcement of American immigration laws. They are threatening a federal lawsuit demanding foreign language voter ballots in Georgia.

Secretary Kemp was one of several Republicans who attended an annual “Power Breakfast” GALEO fundraiser gala in May, 2015.

In any language, this all looks like an example of what to expect from the establishment Republican promise to be more “inclusive” and their effort to be more Dem-like to stay in office.

Kemp’s videos can be viewed on his Youtube page – ‘BrianKempGA’

D.A. KING IS PRESIDENT OF THE GEORGIA-BASED DUSTIN INMAN SOCIETY.

Read more here: 

October 6, 2016

Illegal alien lobby applauds Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State, Brian Kemp, for producing foreign language voter-assistance videos

Posted by D.A. King at 1:00 pm - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  

You can call Kemp’s office in the state Capitol at 404-656-2881 – he will be running for governor in 2018.

GALEO & Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta applaud Secretary of State Brian Kemp’s effort to close the language barrier

Press Statement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 6, 2016

Contact: Jerry Gonzalez, Executive Director, GALEO 404.745.2580, jerry@galeo.org

and

Stephanie Cho, Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Atlanta, Executive Director, 404-585-8446, scho@advancingjustice-atlanta.org
____________________

(ATLANTA, GA) – On Tuesday, October 4th, Secretary of State Brian Kemp unveiled the first of four new video tutorials in-language on voter registration, absentee voting by mail, advance in-person voting, and Election Day voting.

Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta and GALEO applaud Secretary of State Brian Kemp for translating online voter registration tutorials in Hindi, Korean, Mandarin, Spanish, and Vietnamese. With only six days left until the voter registration deadline, we appreciate Secretary Kemp’s effort to close the language barrier gap and to outreach to citizens who are Limited English Proficient.

We hope this is the beginning of the Secretary of State’s Office offering more in-language voter education materials and continue to support Asian Americans, Latinos, and all People of Color as we carry on our fight for full access to participation in American Democracy

For the full statement from Secretary of state HERE.

Videos are uploaded on Secretary of State Brian Kemp’s YouTube channel HERE.

###

Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Atlanta (formerly Asian American Legal Advocacy Center or AALAC) is the first nonprofit legal center dedicated to the civil rights of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (AANHPI) in the Southeast. We were formed in the Spring of 2010 by and for Asian Americans. We work in four major program areas: public policy; civic engagement; leadership development; and legal services. You can read more about us at www.advancingjustice-atlanta.org.

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Don’t speak English but want to register to vote in Georgia? No problem! Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp has spent tax dollars on instructive foreign language videos!

Posted by D.A. King at 11:10 am - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  

As we noted HERE, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp ( Capitol office phone 404-656-2881 ) is producing foreign language videos to assist non-English speakers in voter registration. Kemp has released four new video tutorials on voter registration and absentee balloting – in English, Hindi, Korean, Mandarin, Spanish and Vietnamese. See HERE for the entire taxpayer-funded video collection.

Kemp video

Press release: Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp unveils foreign-language video to instruct non-English speakers on voter registration

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Media release from the Georgia SOS office ( HERE )

SOS Brian Kemp’s office phone: 404-656-2881

You can see one of the videos described below HERE.

October 5, 2016

Brian Kemp

Brian Kemp

KEMP UNVEILS FIRST OF FOUR NEW MULTI-LANGUAGE ELECTION VIDEOS

ATLANTA, GA – Today Secretary of State Brian Kemp unveiled the first of four new video tutorials in English, Hindi, Korean, Mandarin, Spanish, and Vietnamese on voter registration, absentee voting by mail, advance in-person voting, and Election Day voting. Kemp encourages Georgians to take advantage of these tutorials with only seven days left until the voter registration deadline and absentee voting by mail already underway for the November General Election.

“I want every eligible Georgian to have the information they need to take part in the electoral process,” stated Secretary Kemp. “These new resources will help voters who are non-English speakers know how to register to vote and prepare to cast their ballot.”

Secretary Kemp initiated this project to ensure every Georgian is informed on Election Day. Individuals can view the voter registration tutorials by visiting Secretary Kemp’s YouTube channel or the Elections Division’s website. All four tutorials will be available to Georgians by week’s end. Kemp will also work with minority advocacy groups to promote the videos in various communities across the state.

“In the Secretary of State’s office, we are dedicated to ensuring every Georgian has the opportunity to register to vote and allow their voice to be heard at the polls,” said Kemp.

Several important dates are fast approaching for eligible Georgian citizens who want to vote in the General Election on November 8, 2016.

The deadline to register to vote or update voter information is October 11, 2016. Georgia citizens can submit an electronic voter registration application using their Georgia driver’s license number or state-issued identification card number on several platforms: Online Voter Registration (OLVR), the free “GA SOS” mobile app for Apple and Android devices, and the recently announced “2VOTE” text messaging pilot project. Individuals can also mail in hard-copy voter registration applications to their county registrar to register to vote by the deadline.

“It has never been easier to register to vote in our state,” said Kemp. “For the first time in Georgia, voters can register to vote or update their information online, via text, or by using the office’s smartphone app.”

By October 11, voters should verify their voting information and, if necessary, update their record. The “My Voter Page” is a great resource to check your voter status, update your personal record, and view individualized voting information to prepare for November.

Absentee voting by mail began on September 20. As of today, 14,729 mail-in absentee ballots have been cast for races on the ballot this November. Advance in-person voting begins on October 17. Georgia law also requires the polls to be open on Saturday, October 29 in all 159 counties for Georgians to vote in the November contests.

In-person voting occurs on electronic voting equipment in Georgia. If you wish to cast a paper ballot, you must request an absentee ballot by November 4.

Georgia is not a “covered jurisdiction” under the federal Voting Rights Act to offer election information in other languages. Ballots and related election materials are printed in English.

Currently, there are over 6.5 million registered voters in the Peach State.

Brian Kemp has been Secretary of State since January 2010. Among the office’s wide-ranging responsibilities, the Secretary of State is charged with conducting secure, accessible, and fair elections, the registration of corporations, and the regulation of securities, charities, and professional license holders.

For more information about the office, visit our website at www.sos.ga.gov. Follow Secretary Kemp for agency news on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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