When Tennessee’s elected tell you that they can’t do anything about illegal immigration, that it’s all up to the federal government to fix, or because the Chamber of Commerce and the NFIB small business lobbyist say it’s anti-business, or because it’s not really a problem in Tennessee because the governor and too many RINO state legislators refuse to acknowledge the growing problem in Tennessee, show them this:
DeSantis has been working hand-in-glove with his Republican state legislators to protect his state’s citizens and legal residents from the destructive immigration policies of the Biden administration.
DeSantis has already issued an emergency order to “ban the issuance or renewal of all state licenses to companies or NGOs that provide services to Unaccompanied Alien Children (UACs) in Florida.” Now he has sent six legislative proposals to the legislature to address the problem of businesses, NGOs, and any other concern whose operations facilitate illegal immigration.
DeSantis is sending a clear and unequivocal message, that these businesses and NGOs are not welcome in his state and he will do whatever is legally within his power and that of the other branches of his state government, to make life untenable for those helping spur illegal immigration.
Tennessee on the other hand, continues to bend over backwards to accommodate the Chamber and NFIB on any business related legislation practically forgetting that big businesses have been moving to Tennessee because of the business-centric benefits.
For example, Alliance Bernstein moved its headquarters from NYC because it is simply cheaper from any and all perspectives to operate in Nashville as compared to NYC. In addition, their employees could afford to live where they work. They and their woke politics were welcomed with Tennessee taxpayer money.
As to illegal immigration, Tennessee’s state legislators choose to side with the Chamber and NFIB and close their eyes to growing problem in the state. Even with lax workplace enforcement, GOP Rep. Mike Sparks couldn’t stop himself from whining about the fines placed on employers who hire illegal aliens in violation of state law.
And heaven forbid Tennessee actually pass an E-verify law that actually makes sense, assuming a bill that makes sense is actually filed. The E-verify process requires submission of certain documents which then are compared to U.S. government databases to determine “employment eligibility”, ie, that a person is legally authorized to work in the U.S. There are three categories of acceptable documents to establish identity for submission through the E-verify program. If a person cannot submit one of the documents from List A, then they must submit one document from each of List B & C.
List B includes submission of a drivers license but it must be backed up by a document from List C.
What this means is that Tennessee’s current statute and any bill that relies solely on a drivers license to determine employment eligibility, is meaningless given the numerous documented reports of fraud perpetrated in the issuance of driver licenses. And that’s to say nothing of the implications for voter fraud.
Tennessee legislators spent months and taxpayer money exploring the arrival of UACs to the state and Sen. Richard Briggs and Rep. Ryan Williams making excuses and minimizing the impact of NGO Bethany Christian Services whose Nashville director openly admitted to contracting with the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement to receive and provide transitional foster care to UACs extolling the Christian virtue of facilitating illegal immigration to Tennessee.
Catholic Charities of East Tennessee, also reputed to be assisting UAC arrivals to Tennessee, was asked to appear before the committee but simply didn’t show up and the committee just couldn’t be bothered to follow up.
At least two members of the Joint Study Committee, Sen. Richard Briggs and Sen. Bo Watson, after wasting taxpayer money on the study committee, conceded that addressing illegal immigration is a federal problem and they can’t really do anything about it at the state level. Worse still, Watson says we need to look to our federal legislators to fix the problem and Briggs says Tennessee is not in an illegal immigration crisis, so basically, we don’t have anything to be concerned about.
Both Watson and Briggs were cheerleading Mark Green’s UAC refugee bill which allows an illegal alien living in Tennessee to facilitate the smuggling of a child to the U.S. border without any penalty, and which would override the (unlikely) governor’s veto regarding UAC placements in Tennessee.
Tennessee not only has a growing illegal immigration problem strengthened immensely by the proliferation of well-funded NGOs protecting illegal aliens living and working in the state, so much so that they are holding public rallies protesting employers who take advantage of illegal alien workers because they are “undocumented.”
These are the employers being protected by bad policy pushers like the Chamber and NFIB and bad policy makers like Briggs, Watson to name a few.
They could not be more wrong on all counts. We’ve already had the lesson that when Republicans had complete control of the federal government, they did nothing to address the problem of illegal immigration. In fact, they worked against the most impactful, beneficial for Americans, immigration policies put forward by Trump. Why would we expect anything more in 2022 or 2024?
The DeSantis lesson is crystal clear – our Constitutional system of federalism equips states with power if they choose to use it and it is absolutely up to states to guard their own best interests. Unfortunately for Tennessee, the governor’s office and too many in the General Assembly don’t see it that way and perhaps even believe that a certain amount of illegal immigration (ie, cheap labor), is just fine for Tennessee.