tom vilsack

Tom Vilsack

Former Iowa governor, named by Barack Obama to be Secretary of the Department of Agriculture. Strong supporter of illegal immigration.

Last modified Dec 17, 2008
Discussed in (click each link for the full post):

Democratic Convention speakers list and immigration - 09/03/12

Summary

This post has a list of the speakers at the Democratic National Convention and links to more information on their immigration positions when known. There are also a preview of how the immigration issue will be presented at the convention, and some things you can do if you oppose illegal immigration.

Preview

Tom Vilsack promotes illegal activity, uses bogus "crops rotting" line - 02/24/12

At the Department of Agriculture's 2012 Agricultural Outlook Forum, Ag secretary Tom Vilsack once again promoted illegal activity now and an amnesty or guest workers program for illegal aliens in the future.

With millions unemployed, Ag Secy Tom Vilsack demeans American workers, promotes amnesty, opposes enforcement, uses bogus talking points, opposes eVerify - 05/27/11

Secretary of the Department of Agriculture Tom Vilsack held a press conference on Wednesday in which he demeaned American workers, promoted immigration "reform", opposed immigration enforcement, and used a series of bogus immigration talking points.

An account of his remarks is here, with more excerpts at [1].

1. Vilsack ran down American workers, saying: "While some American citizens step up and take (farm) jobs, the truth is even when farmers make their best effort to recruit a domestic workforce, few citizens express interest. In large part that's because this is hard, tough work." The idea that growers want to recruit Americans is more than a bit dubious; many run down American workers as much as Vilsack. Growers tend to prefer lower-wage, more compliant illegal aliens. And, we sent a man to the moon and won World War II, now Vilsack falsely says that most Americans don't want hard work. That's also more than a bit dubious because a good percentage of those doing farm work are in fact Americans. And, there's the fact that the presence of large numbers of illegal aliens tends to reduce farm wages at the same time as decreasing safety in farm jobs.

The pro-American alternative would be for Vilsack to oppose illegal immigration and push something like this plan to get unemployed Americans working temporary farm jobs until the economy improves. That would answer the labor shortage complaints of farmers, improve working conditions on farms, and would save money overall (considering that most of those unemployed will be getting unemployment insurance and considering the costs of illegal aliens).

2. Vilsack supported comprehensive immigration reform, aka amnesty. See the link for the downsides of that plan [1].

3. One of the key selling points of immigration "reform" is that it would include stepped-up enforcement. Vilsack seems not to be such a fan of enforcement, saying: "It's difficult to know when someone is documented and when someone isn't. It's difficult when there are efforts at enforcement that basically disrupt not only undocumented folks but also documented … which we've seen in some of the processing facilities." If "reform" passed, does anyone think Vilsack would do a 180 and support "disrupt[ive]" immigration raids?

4. Vilsack used a long list of bogus talking points. The first item above is the jobs Americans wont do canard, but there were several more. From the article:

Reforms would result in "a reliable, legal workforce," said Vilsack. Reforms would also:

* Continue efforts "to secure the borders."
* Hold accountable "businesses that break the law by undermining American workers and exploiting undocumented workers."

The first is secure the border. The second is what boils down to the immigration wage floor. See both links.

Vilsack also used the deportations false choice, saying "The reality is, if you tried to deport all 12 million it would take several hundred years. That isn't practical." See the link for how he tried to mislead.

Vilsack - just as his boss, George W Bush, and dozens of other hacks have done - used the system is broken canard [2].

5. Vilsack also ran down the eVerify program, at least as a standalone solutiion, saying: "The E-Verify system creates a potential difficulty, particularly for smaller businesses... That's because they'd have to invest resources in equipment and training to participate."

Vilsack was accompanied by Bob Stallman, the president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, who engaged in crops rotting in the fields scare tactics:

"Our concern is that without a legal agricultural guest worker program in place – or without comprehensive immigration reform – you have roughly 500,000 workers out there that, frankly, would be screened out (by) a mandatory E-Verify program. If that happens, the risk of production losses, or production moving outside the country, is very real... If you just put in a mandatory E-Verify program, there's suddenly a huge gap in agricultural that must be filled from somewhere. Otherwise, the crops won't be planted and harvested. That's the reality."

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[1] Vilsack: "There needs to be a comprehensive immigration system that deals with the 12 million people here, many working in our farm fields."

[2] Vilsack: "I've met farmers and ranchers all over this country who are worried about the broken immigration system... Simply put, our broken immigration system offers little hope for producers trying to do the right thing and make a living...

Tom Vilsack promotes, misleads about anti-American DREAM Act - 12/16/10

Current Secretary of the Department of Agriculture and former Iowa governor Tom Vilsack, writing at the official blog of the USDA, offers "The DREAM Act for Our Rural Communities and Our Nation". Not only is the DREAM Act anti-American - it would let the illegal aliens covered by the bill take college educations away from U.S. citizens - but he misleads about the details of the bill.

I left the following comment which at post time has not been approved:

One of the foreign treats Vilsack helped introduce into IA was foreign street gangs, something they hadn't seen before.

He's also lying above:
1. They aren't necessarily the "children of undocumented immigrants". They themselves are illegal aliens, and children and parents can have different statuses.
2. They could have "[chosen] to come here". There's no restriction that them coming here be involuntary, and some older children cross on their own.
3. Those covered would only be "the best and the brightest" in the broadest sense possible. The education requirements are minimal.
4. Vilsack lies about or doesn't understand what it means to "qualify for the DREAM Act". It would grant conditional legal status to 1 to 2 million.

And, this part is especially ironic: "And many of the best minds in their high school classes choose to pursue opportunities away from home."

The DA isn't just an anti-American bill that would deprive some U.S. citizens of college. It's also an anti-Mexico bill and a bill that doesn't represent good policy for other sending countries. It would continue braindraining the Third World and depriving those countries of the people they need. If all the Mexican citizens who'd be covered by the DA returned home they could help that country be a bit less dysfunctional, and that would help the U.S. far more than any benefits we'd receive from them staying here.

The DA also represents the political elites turning their backs on their fellow citizens and supporting taking away educational resources from Americans in order to give them to foreign citizens who are here illegally.

Vilsack and the rest of the Obama administration need to remember who they're supposed to be working for.

Notes: The first paragraph is a reference to this. I'll update this post (and add the deleted comments tag and perhaps file a FOIA request) if my comment isn't approved.

UPDATE: It took until the next day or the day after that, but the USDA did publish the comment above.

[1] blogs.usda.gov/2010/12/16/
the-dream-act-for-our-rural-communities-and-our-nation

Napolitano, Vilsack: call it the "H1N1 virus", not "swine flu". More concerned about pork industry than public safety - 04/28/09

Janet Napolitano of the Department of Homeland Security and Tom Vilsack of the Department of Agriculture want us to call swine flu the "H1N1 virus" instead (link). They have somewhat of a point: if you really can't get it from eating pork then perhaps we should grit our teeth and not wish for the demise of the pork industry. The problem is that while they're rushing to the aid of pork producers, they're keeping the borders as open as ever.

Per Vilsack:

"This is not a food-borne illness, virus. It is not correct to refer to it as swine flu because really that's not what this is about."

Per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention acting director Richard Besser:

"That's not helpful to pork producers. That's not helpful to people who eat pork. It's not helpful to people who are wondering, how can they get this infection,"

Israel wants to call it the "Mexico flu". Another group wants to call it the "North American flu". We'll call it the swine flu.

Your Monsanto, Tom Vilsack, GMO food assignment - 03/07/09

I'm not up-to-date on farming matters and I let McDonald's handle the food side of things.

Obama cabinet might include Democrat titans: Gore, Napolitano, Vilsack, Howard Dean, Caroline Kennedy... - 11/11/08

The Barack Obama cabinet might include such Democratic Party titans as Al Gore, Arizona governor Janet Napolitano, former Iowa governor Tom Vilsack, Caroline Kennedy, Howard Dean, Bill Richardson, John Kerry, and many more truly titanic names. This link has a "transition flowchart", a PDF showing some potential picks and all of them are truly great figures who will help the Repu... er, I mean the Democrats. While this could all be a jolly joke, who knows since the head of the transition team is John Podesta and his think tank the Center for American Progress is as much a joke as the Harding Institute.

A possible "Climate Czar" is Al Gore, someone who might take Obama's outreach to pre-teens and make my April, 2008 satire about a "Green Pioneers" program a reality.

Podesta himself might head up an "Energy Security Council".

For Agriculture, Tom Vilsack is one of four possibilities.

Health and Human Services: Howard Dean or Tom Daschle.

Billionairess Penny Pritzker might be at Commerce; the tip of the iceberg on her is here.

For the Department of Homeland Security, the possiblities are:
* Tim Roemer (affiliated with George Mason University, a nexus of "cosmotarianism" and support for illegal activity),
* Raymond Kelly and Bill Bratton, chiefs of police of NYC and L.A. respectively,
* James Lee Witt (Clinton-era head of FEMA)
* Richard Clarke

For the State Department, all of them are some variation of bad jokes: John Kerry, Chuck Hagel, Richard Holbrooke, Sam Nunn, and Colin Powell. The latter is listed under two additional possibilities.

At HUD, one possibility is BHO fixer Valerie Jarrett.

At Interior, Bill Richardson is one of five.

As the Department of Justice, Janet Napolitano, Rep. Artur Davis, and Eric Holder are listed. Someone from the latter's law firm visited this site after I posted about the viral video attempt at that link.

Also, from the link:

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. might be the head of the Environmental Protection Agency; and Caroline Kennedy could be the ambassador to the United Nations. Kennedy Jr. might be the head of the Environmental Protection Agency; and Caroline Kennedy could be the ambassador to the United Nations. It's just an unofficial guide but a fun one to follow.

Yes, just watch out for that iceberg.

Former Iowa governor Tom Vilsack takes illegal immigration side in Swift raid; Peter Schey link - 04/29/08

From this:

Allegations that federal officials illegally rounded up and arrested almost 1,300 Swift factory workers during raids in Marshalltown and across the country are being highlighted today at a public hearing that includes testimony from former Gov. Tom Vilsack...

Tom Vilsack misled about Swift raid, DHS cooperation? - 01/03/07

Oh, please say it's just a miscommunication and Iowa governor and illegal immigration supporter Tom Vilsack didn't lie about the Swift immigration raids, which were held on December 12. A week later, Vilsack and Iowa National Guard Maj. Gen. Ron Dardis sent a strongly-worded letter to DHS head Michael Chertoff complaining about a "media blackout" and that they hadn't been informed of the "size and scope" of the raids.

Will Rod Blagojevich pro-illegal immigration scheme violate law? - 12/13/06

In November 2005, Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich - a very strong supporter of illegal immigration - created the "New Americans Immigrant Policy Council" (press release link) to come up with ways to deal with immigrants in his state. The report from the NAIPC has been released, as has a report from a similar panel. Blago has endorsed their findings, but has not committed any money. And, whether any money will be found is still to be determined.

As even the WaPo discloses ("Ill. Governor To Announce New Benefits For Immigrants" by Kari Lydersen), these benefits would be for both legal and illegal immigrants:

Key points of the New Americans program include increasing the number of dual-language schools, English-as-a-second-language programs and bilingual staff members at state agencies, as well as providing job training for skilled and unskilled immigrants. The program is described as the first of its kind nationwide.

Tom Vilsack and Mike Huckabee might beg to differ; the "welcoming centers" proposed in one of the reports matches those offered in Iowa. There are only two points worth noting in the WaPo coverage: that one of the members of one of the panels is "former Immigration and Naturalization Service commissioner Doris Meissner", and this:

Susan Tully, national field director of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, said the program will put Blagojevich in violation of U.S. immigration law... "He does not have the right under the Constitution, even as governor of Illinois, to grant benefits to people who haven't been cleared by immigration and customs agents," she said.

The article "Aid for immigrants proposed" by Oscar Avila has more on the proposals, but like the WaPo report it doesn't offer much backstory.

Now, let's look at the seamy underbelly of Blago's scheme.

The 11/2005 press release doesn't differentiate between illegal and legal immigrants. And:

The Governor shall appoint a 15-person New Americans Immigrant Policy Council comprised of the chairs of the Joint Legislative Immigrant and Refugee Policy Task Force, a representative of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, and other appropriate parties.

Like Blago, the ICIRR is a strong supporter of illegal immigration. They were involved in the Jim Oberweis smear. And, they helped organize some of the Chicago illegal immigration marches; Blago spoke at at least one of those. Not only that, but after the first march their president Juan Salgado spoke at Los Pinos, the Mexican White House. And, their president is Josh Hoyt.

I look forward to the WaPo and the Chicago Tribune disclosing who Blago is affiliated with.

Swift packing immigration raid conducted; send Bush a cookie! - 12/13/06

Yesterday ICE conducted the latest in a series of what are most likely show immigration raids, this time of Swift & Co.'s meatpacking plants in various cities. A roundup is here.

Tom Vilsack for President? - 11/09/06

Democratic Iowa governor Tom Vilsack has announced that he's running for president. For the short, punchy version, see the "Traveling Tom" (travelingtom.com) website from the IA GOP.

From this:

Iowans get exotic treat: Central American gangs - 09/07/05

MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa (link) The Midwest seems an unlikely hideout for Osama bin Laden's hired hands. But an ongoing federal crackdown shows an increasing presence of a violent gang with suspected links to al-Qaida. The gang, M-S-13, was founded in El Salvador and is known for smuggling drugs and immigrants into the U-S. [...and there's a possible terrorism connection...]

"Who is the Cheap Labor Lobby?" - 07/16/05

FPM has a good roundup of those groups that support massive illegal immigration. Their list of the perps includes:
- Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates and the high-tech industry...
- The meat packing industry...
- Clothing manufacturers...
- Unions...
- The hotel and restaurant industry...
- The ultra-wealthy a

New Americans welcomed to Iowa, Arkansas - 06/30/05

The U.S. Department of Labor has recently given $850,000 grants to at least two states to establish "immigrant centers".

From this: