Sen. Flake attempts to slip in DACA with citizenship option
Jan 11, 2018 BY KAT SHEPHERD
According to a bipartisan group of senators, they have a created a deal which will provide protections for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, but President Donald J. Trump and other members of the GOP are not in agreement.
The senators have lamented that their efforts for the so-called “Dreamers” are being held off by Republicans. The bill is expected to include legalization for DACA recipients, a border security package, changes to the State Department’s diversity visa lottery program and a change to prevent chain migration.
According to The Hill:
Sens. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said on Thursday that the group of six senators has locked down an agreement amongst themselves on pairing a fix for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program with a border security package.
“We’ve got this bipartisan group. We are at a deal. … It’s the only game in town,” Flake told reporters.
But Durbin and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) were told during a Thursday meeting with President Trump at the White House that he was not ready to sign onto the bill.
“We were hoping for that, but the president is not prepared to do that at this moment,” Durbin said when asked if they wanted the president’s support before they moved forward with their agreement.
The group of senators holding the talks — which also includes Democratic Sens. Michael Bennet (Colo.) and Robert Menendez (N.J.) and Republican Sen. Cory Gardner (Colo.) — have been negotiating for months on a deal that would include a fix for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Their bill is expected to include legalization for DACA recipients known as Dreamers as well as a border security package and changes to the State Department’s diversity visa lottery program and family-based immigration policies.
Those four parameters are in line with what President Trump and lawmakers agreed to during a White House meeting earlier this week. The six senators said in a joint statement on Thursday afternoon that they have reached an agreement, which would include a path to citizenship.
“President Trump called on Congress to solve the DACA challenge. … We are now working to build support for that deal in Congress,” they said.
Durbin said the bill would include a pathway to citizenship not only for current DACA recipients, but other undocumented immigrants who would qualify for the program.
During a press briefing, Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said, “There has not been a deal reached yet. However, we still think we can get there and we are very focused on trying to make sure that happens.”
Flake has indicated that changes to family-based immigration would be narrowly focused on the DACA population and their family members, but not to the entire immigration population.
The Hill also reported:
Flake also said that senators had discussed reallocating some of the State Departments diversity lottery visas to people who have Temporary Protected Status (TPS), a program the Trump administration has been scaling back.
Both Flake and Durbin have declined to discuss specific border security numbers. But Durbin indicated on Wednesday night that the border security package would include funding for fencing and barriers, but also technology.
Durbin confirmed that he believed the group has an agreement and they are “working to get support from the other senators, on both sides of the aisle, and we won’t be releasing draft or final version at least through through the weekend.”
Staffers for Durbin, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Reps. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) are expected to meet on Thursday as part of separate discussions to figure out a path forward.
Still, the White House suggested the emerging Senate agreement was not something Trump would accept, even though the president on Tuesday suggested he would sign whatever immigration bill lawmakers sent to his desk.
Marc Short, the White House’s director of legislative affairs, said that the president has not signed onto the agreement and that there is a “long ways to go.”
He added that the White House is “not looking for DACA to be the DREAM Act” — referring to the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act that provides a path to citizenship.
Short added that the president wants changes to “chain migration” to go broader than just impacting the DACA population, a potential hurdle from the bipartisan Senate group’s deal.
“I think we’re pleased that bipartisan members are talking … but I still think there’s a ways to go,” he said.
Cornyn said a message had been delivered that the bipartisan group would not be able to single-handily decide what the final DACA agreement is.
“I think what the president told them is its fine for them to negotiate … but what they need to do is share that with others so it will have broad enough support to actually get passed,” he said.
ICE Raids 7-Eleven Stores; Arrests 21 Workers, 9 Managers
Jan 11, 2018 by Warren Mass
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents raided 98 7-Eleven stores before dawn on January 10 to interview employees suspected of being aliens working without the proper work permits. The raids took place in 17 states and the District of Columbia.
ICE said its agents made 21 arrests of aliens working without green cards, as well as nine 7-Eleven franchise owners and managers.
Derek Benner, acting head of ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations, said that the audits were “the first of many” and “a harbinger of what’s to come” for employers.
“This is what we’re gearing up for this year and what you’re going to see more and more of is these large-scale compliance inspections, just for starters,” told The Associated Press.
“It’s not going to be limited to large companies or any particular industry — big, medium and small,” he said.
Once the inspections have taken place, officials plan to look at whether the cases warrant administrative action or criminal investigations, Benner told AP.
The 7-Eleven stores visited during the January 10 operations “will be required to produce documents showing they required work authorization,” according to ICE. ICE said in a statement that the enforcement effort would “send a strong message” to employers to only hire documented workers.
“ICE will enforce the law, and if you are found to be breaking the law, you will be held accountable,” Deputy Director Thomas Homan said in the statement quoted by the media. “Businesses that hire illegal workers are a pull factor for illegal immigration and we are working hard to remove this magnet. ICE will continue its efforts to protect jobs for American workers by eliminating unfair competitive advantages for companies that exploit illegal immigration.”
An ABC News report noted that in recent years these types of inspections, known as I-9 audit notices, have been less frequent, but ICE officials said that the January 10 visits are the start of more to come. (USCIS Form I-9 — officially called Employment Eligibility Verification — is the Department of Homeland Security form employers are required to fill out after inspecting work eligibility documents.) Over the past nine years, the peak year for such inspections was in 2013 with 3,127. There were only 1,360 I-9 inspections in fiscal year 2017.
Homan predicted the increase in the number of such raids last October in response to California’s implementation of a sanctuary law. “ICE will have no choice but to conduct at-large arrests in local neighborhoods and at work sites, which will inevitably result in additional collateral arrests, instead of focusing on arrests at jails and prisons where transfers are safer for ICE officers and the community,” said Homan.
ABC News reported that 7-Eleven’s corporate office in Irving, Texas, said it was aware of the ICE actions at the franchise locations, but that franchisees are “independent business owners and are solely responsible for their employees including deciding who to hire and verifying their eligibility to work in the United States.”
A 7-Eleven statement released to the press said:
This means that all store associates in a franchised store are employees of the Franchisee and not 7-Eleven, Inc. As part of the 7-Eleven franchise agreement, 7-Eleven requires all franchise business owners to comply with all federal, state and local employment laws. This obligation requires 7-Eleven franchisees to verify work eligibility in the US for all of their prospective employees prior to hiring. 7-Eleven takes compliance with immigration laws seriously and has terminated the franchise agreements of franchisees convicted of violating these laws.
A report on the ICE raids in the Washington Post observed that supporters of tougher immigration enforcement want to require all employers to use the government’s E-Verify system, which checks employees’ I-9 employment eligibility forms, social security numbers, and other identifying information against federal databases. The report correctly noted, however, that critics have pointed out that E-Verify is error-prone and is an expansion of government power.
The New American noted the downside of E-Verify in a March 2015 article, “Congress Pushes Obama-backed National Biometric ID for Americans.” That article, which was mainly about a bill introduced in Congress several years ago called the “Legal Workforce Act,” said that the legislation “would also force [every] employer in America to purchase and use so-called ‘E-Verify technology” to check with Washington, D.C., as to whether potential employees have government permission to work.”
In the article, we quoted former Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas), in his capacity as chairman of Campaign for Liberty, who warned that the national ID scheme, of which E-verify was a component, would be a nightmare. Among other concerns, Paul noted that it would allow federal bureaucrats to include biometric information — potentially including fingerprints, retinal scans, and more — that likely would be eventually used as a tracking device. It would also make it illegal for anyone to work in the United States without obtaining the national ID.
“Every time any citizen applies for a job, the government would know — and you can bet its only a matter of time until ‘ID scans’ will be required to make even routine purchases, as well,” Paul warned, adding that “statists in both parties have been fighting to ram their radical national ID-database scheme into law” for years.
Constitutional conservatives opposed to companies hiring aliens who are not authorized to work in the United States and who might applaud ICE’s recent crackdown have reason to oppose E-Verify and other facets of a national ID database. While safeguarding our borders and the employment opportunities of Americans is important, these objectives should not be accomplished at the expense of creating an Orwellian “big brother” state.
The Ingraham Angle 1/11/18 | Fox News Today January 11, 2018
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