Senator Dianne Feinstein has re-introduced the "Agricultural Job Opportunities, Benefits and Security Act" (AgJobs) farmworker amnesty plan  with sixteen co-sponsors . Consider these listed features:
# Undocumented agriculture workers would be eligible for a “blue card” if they can demonstrate having worked in American agriculture for at least 150 work days (or 863 hours) over the previous two years before December 31, 2008.
# The blue card holder would be required to work in American agriculture for an additional three years (working at least 150 work days per year) or five years (working at least 100 work days per year), before becoming eligible to apply for a green card to become a permanent legal resident.
# The blue card would entitle the worker to a temporary legal resident status. The total number of blue cards would be capped at 1.35 million over a five-year period, and the program would sunset after five years.
A former Department of Labor attorney discusses it here, using phrases like "anti-American", "un-American", and "indentured servitude". Note that the cap would probably be increased over time until many more were covered by the amnesty, and note also that such programs are easy to abuse using fake documents. For instance:
Two-thirds of special agricultural worker applications for a 1986 amnesty were fraudulent. Terrorist Mohammed Abouhalima was one such fraud. He secured legal status, then got involved in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
And, note the incredible dishonesty in the various statements at , such as:
"During these rough economic times, our own farmers can’t find enough workers," said Senator Nelson (D-Fla.)... ...Efforts have been made for years to get Americans to do the work, but they simply won’t do it...
Absent easy access to cheap foreign labor, farmers and growers would be forced to either move offshore, mechanize, or raise wages and increase labor standards in order to attract American workers. If they really wanted to do the latter, they could do it especially with millions of U.S. citizens unemployed.
Then, under the headline "Consider some of these stories", they discuss a few crops rotting in the fields articles, part of the decades-long line of grower-friendly propaganda promising $10 heads of lettuce without a guest workers program. Two out of the three were discussed here: one about growers moving operations to Mexico, and another from a year ago featuring a tomato grower whining. As it turned out, he had been named to a panel by George W Bush.
UPDATE: The House version will be re-introduced by Democrat Howard Berman and Republican Adam Putnam. Craig Regelbrugge of the American Nursery and Landscape Association and the Agriculture Coalition for Labor Reform and Tom Stenzel of the United Fresh Produce Association cheer the news here.
UPDATE 2: Not surprisingly, the NYT supports the scheme.
 The co-sponsors, all Democrats, are: Charles Schumer, Pat Leahy, Jeff Bingaman, Barbara Boxer, Maria Cantwell, Bob Casey, Chris Dodd, Russ Feingold, Ted Kauffman, Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Herb Kohl, Carl Levin, Joe Lieberman, Patty Murray, and Bill Nelson.
Thu, 05/14/2009 - 12:53 · Importance: 8