The Poison Pill In The Senate’s Amnesty Bill

Over at the rabidly pro-illegal immigration Wall Street Journal, Brendan Miniter is offering up one of the more bizarre defenses of the Senate Amnesty Bill that has been presented so far:

“Today the Republican Party again confronts the choice of whether to cut the overall size of the welfare state–by reforming Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and other entitlements–or going after illegal aliens. And so far it appears the GOP is heading down the same road California Republicans took a decade ago. Faced with a tough re-election cycle this year, congressional Republicans opted to make immigration reform a central issue. Rather than lasting reform, however, what the party is getting so far is gridlock, or, worse, reforms that would strengthen the GOP’s political opposition.

Buried deep in the Senate’s legislation–which would create a guest worker program–is a requirement that employers who hire guest workers pay them a “prevailing wage.” First enacted in 1931 in the Davis Bacon Act to insulate unionized Northern contractors from competition with black migrant workers from the South for federal contracts, federal prevailing wage laws have long served the interests of Big Labor. Expanding Davis Bacon provisions to cover guest workers would set a dangerous precedent for extending prevailing-wage mandates to other private employers. It’s hard to see how increasing labor costs to give organized labor a leg up is good for either the economy or the Republican Party, but then it’s a predictable outcome from a divided political party that has lost sight of its small-government principles.

This isn’t a position Republicans had to put themselves in. Voters angry over the cost of illegal immigration are also angry over the steep price they pay through taxes for generous government benefits. Getting big government off the back of taxpayers once united the party and handed it the confidence of the voting public.”

What in the world is he talking about? Why would being for smaller government not be compatible with being tough on illegal immigration? In fact, other than a few exceptions, aren’t most of the RINOS who keep ruining our chances to cut the size of government in favor of the Senate Bill?

Furthermore, isn’t it the House Bill that opposes giving the illegal aliens anything but a one way ticket out of town while the Senate Bill suggests giving them Social Security, cheaper college than Americans, and earned income tax credits? You want to see the national debt balloon? Then turn 12-20 million illegal aliens with minimal education and skills into American citizens and watch as they put us hundreds of billions of dollars further into the red by soaking up welfare, food stamps, the earned income tax credit and every other goodie they’ll be entitled to as American citizens. Without question, over the long haul, it would be cheaper to get rid of them.

Moreover, the Davis Bacon provision is in the Senate’s Amnesty Bill, which is the bill favored by people who aren’t serious about stopping illegal immigration. So, if Miniter has a problem with that, he should complain about John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Mike DeWine, and the other Republicans in the Senate who’ve, “lost sight of (their) small-government principles” by supporting a bill containing such a provision in the first place.

However, the real beef Miniter probably has with the Davis Bacon provision is that it makes “cheap labor” very expensive. If businesses have to pay illegals wages as high as or higher than those of American workers along with paying their taxes and social security as part of a guest worker program, then it’ll kill the whole program — which is ironic, isn’t it? The open borders business crowd cut a deal with the devil to get this Amnesty bill through and now they’ve finally realized that their union loving Democratic pals slipped a poison pill into their lunch. Even though they still want the meal, they need their Republican brethren, whom they’ve been deriding as “nativists” and “xenophobes” to fix their little problem for them before letting them have their way. That would seem to be what Miniter is trying to help accomplish, in a roundabout way, with this column.

Hat tip to Daily Pundit for the story.

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