Federal database assures a legal work force

By D.A. King, Atlanta Journal Constitution, May 19, 2008

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Summary:

Voters in coming local elections should know that as of May 1, more than 60 of Georgia's 159 counties were in violation of state law by not having enrolled in the E-Verify system. Far too many municipal governments show the same disregard for the rule of law as well.

While political candidates promise "more jobs for Americans," we shouldn't dismiss the tools made available by the federal government to attempt to ensure that those precious jobs do not go to black-market, taxpayer subsidized labor.

It is a federal crime to knowingly hire an illegal alien.

With a better chance of being struck by lightning than being sanctioned for violating the law, far too many employers disregard it.

Far too many who will settle for nothing less than a repeat of the failed "onetime" illegal alien legalization scam of 1986 as the solution to the current illegal immigration and illegal employment crisis misrepresent the effectiveness of an electronic federal database E-Verify that serves to verify employment information provided by workers.

With documented cases of multiple employees working in the same building using a common Social Security number either false or stolen from Americans use of the instantaneous E-Verify electronic system has proven to be far too effective for the open borders gang.

Originally known as the Basic Pilot program and presented as a mandatory method of verifying work eligibility, E-Verify is presently a voluntary system that should be expanded, better funded and mandatory, with the goal of eliminating the magnet that draws illegals to our nation. Few will be surprised to learn that it was a coalition of the business community and the far-left ethnic lobby that was successful in making use of the system voluntary.

That relatively few employers have chosen to use the no-cost tool provides alarming, but unsurprising, insight into the intent of those who have not enrolled in the program.

When used to verify work eligibility of newly hired employees, a false negative response does not result in termination of the employee until completion of a lengthy and thorough appeal process. Using scare tactics about Americans losing jobs because of E-Verify is, at best, unproductive.

Participating employers have successfully matched more than 90 percent of new hires to Department of Homeland Security and Social Security Administration database information. Of those who do not match, less than 2 percent contest the result.

This is obvious evidence of the effectiveness of the E-Verify tool and the immigration status of those who then look for illegal employment where the program is not in place.

It is irresponsible to not make it clear that the Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act that began to go into effect in July 2007 requires not only most, and, in 2009, all, public contractors in Georgia to use E-Verify. Also, all public employers the state and county and municipal governments have to do the same.

Voters in coming local elections should know that as of May 1, more than 60 of Georgia's 159 counties were in violation of state law by not having enrolled in the E-Verify system. Far too many municipal governments show the same disregard for the rule of law as well.

The Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act is merely a state law that essentially mandates that in Georgia, we use available tools to comply with federal law.

No law can work unless it is enforced. Georgians should be asking a lot of questions of their local governments about compliance and question all resistance to and criticism of the best tools we have to ensure that American jobs and tax dollars go only to those who obey American laws.

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