A new, apparently unnamed coalition has been formed in Texas to fight state bills designed to reduce illegal immigration. The coalition is using the standard pretext that immigration is a federal responsibility. Of course, they realize that the feds have abrogated their responsibilities; were the feds to enforce the laws, they would push for more local control. Passing the buck to the federal government is the slimmest of dodges.
The apparent ringleader is State Rep. Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas, and their members include:
* Texas Mexican American Legislative Caucus
* Texas Association of Business (President Bill Hammond is a quote source)
* Texas Association of Mexican-American Chambers of Commerce
* Texas Employers for Immigration Reform
* League of United Latin American Citizens (strongly supports illegal immigration)
* Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (has at least an indirect link to the Mexican government; MALDEF)
* American Civil Liberties Union (ditto)
...The group specified a number of immigration bills they called for the Legislature to defeat. Two by Rep. Leo Berman, R-Tyler, that would prohibit children of illegal immigrants from receiving state benefits such as health care, welfare benefits and public education. Another bill the coalition opposes, authored by Rep. Bill Zedler, R-Arlington, would prohibit cities from operating day-labor facilities. Currently, Austin has one such facility and is in the midst of creating another... An immigration platform promoted and distributed by the caucus and the business association outlined a number of proposals for immigration reform. It calls for legal avenues for immigration to the United States, giving those already immigrated opportunity to become legal, the elimination of immigrant quotas, a guest worker program and national security policies to guard against threats of terrorism...
UPDATE: There's a similar, apparently unrelated group at txsip.com calling itself Texans for Sensible Immigration Policy. It consists of:
* Houston Chapter of the Associated General Contractors (AGC)
* Houston Chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC)
* Houston Chapter of the American Subcontractors Association (ASA)
* Houston Contractors Association (HCA)
* Texas Construction Association (TCA)
* Greater Houston Builders Association (GHBA)
* Drywall & Interior Systems Contractors Association (DISCA)
* Women Contractors Association (WCA)
They've even got a sample letter you can send to your representatives:
I work in the construction business in Houston Texas. I am here to tell you that we cannot find enough American citizens willing to labor in the hot sun!
Their FAQ shows an unexpected level of self-awareness. Here's one question:
Aren't you guys are just a bunch of criminals trying to legalize your own bad behavior?
Let's just say they don't answer that in the way that I would.
...few young Americans want to do hard physical labor, particularly in our climate. And in the less-skilled construction trades – masonry, concrete, drywall, tile – more than 80 percent of Texas' workforce is Latino.
Isn't that attitude extremely racist not to mention extremely decadent? A century or two ago, what would these same people have written?
Those who signed on to the letter are in the extended entry.
Bo Pilgrim/Pilgrim's Pride, Pittsburg
Harold Simmons/Contran Corporation, Dallas
Bob Perry/Perry Homes, Houston
Vance Miller/Henry S. Miller, Dallas
J. Huffines/Huffines Auto Group, Dallas
Red McCombs/McCombs Enterprises, San Antonio
W.L. Hunt/Hunt Building Corporation, El Paso
James Leininger/M.D., San Antonio
Phil Adams/Phil Adams Company, Bryan
Bob Barnes/Schlotzsky's, Austin
Kent Hance/Hance Scarborough Wright, Dallas
Tom Loeffler/Loeffler Tuggey Pauerstein Rosenthal LLP, San Antonio
Louis Beecherl/Beecherl Investments, Dallas
Henry J. "Bud" Smith/Bud Smith Organization, Dallas
Dennis Nixon/IBC Bank, Laredo
Ernesto Ancira Jr./Ancira Enterprises, San Antonio
Tom Hewitt/Interstate Hotels & Resorts
Tom Corcoran/FelCor Lodging Trust Inc.
Lionel Sosa/MATT.org, San Antonio
Henry Cisneros/CityView, San Antonio
Henry R. Muñoz III/Kell Muñoz Architects, San Antonio
Harold MacDowell/TDIndustries, Dallas
Pedro Aguirre/Aguirre Corporation, Dallas
Robert "Buddy" Barnes/Dee Brown Inc., Garland
Stephen M. Pitt/Boulder Imports, Houston
Brad Bouma/Select Milk Producers Inc., Plainview
Wayne Palla/Dairy Farmers of America, Grapevine
Jim Baird/Lone Star Milk Producers Inc., Windthorst
Randy Davis/Greenleaf Nursery, El Campo
Josh Bracken/Nicholson-Hardie Garden Centers, Dallas
David R. Pinkus/Tawakoni Plant Farm, Wills Point
Don Darby/Darby Greenhouses & Farms, Jacksonville
Georges Le Mener/Accor North America, Carrollton
Stevan Porter/InterContinental Hotels Group
John Caparella/Gaylord Hotels
Tony Farris/Quorum Hotels
Fri, 02/16/2007 - 09:48 · Importance: 4