Getting serious about illegal immigration

I see where the latest gambit by House Republicans is to tie Ukraine aid to immigration “reform.” Setting aside the fact that aid to Ukraine is, like most foreign aid, a subsidy for US business, the linkage to immigration is a red herring. All the current approaches are failing, are doomed, and are a waste of taxpayer money, something the GOP pretends to care about.

I’ve long held that the solution to most undocumented immigration is to reduce demand:

• fines and prison for any employer found to be employing undocumented immigrants;

• fines for anyone (yes, you and me) who uses the labor of undocumented immigrants (produce, hotels, golf clubs, lawn services, etc).

Draconian? You bet, but it would work faster and more efficiently than a wall and troops at the borders.

Kevin Drum over a takes a similar but less coercive approach:

“The United States should require employers to adopt E-Verify for all new hires. ICE “raids” can then be aimed solely at employers, who would fund the E-Verify program by paying fines whenever they’re out of compliance. If the jobs go away, so will the undocumented workers.”

Of course, this would punish the donor class, raise prices on consumers, and deprive Republicans of a favorite whipping boy, so it will never happen.

Reining in illegal immigration