May 25, 2023
By William Davis
With foreign nationals illegally entering the country by the thousands every day, American workers are rightfully concerned that the influx will drive down wages and limit their own job prospects. As one of the most prominent states fighting against the Biden Administration’s reckless border policies, Florida embraces the E-Verify program to protect American workers.
Governor Ron DeSantis signed legislation earlier this month making Florida the largest state in the country to implement E-Verify, the Department of Homeland Security website that allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States. The legislation, part of an expansive package aimed at curbing illegal immigration in the state, requires all businesses employing 25 or more people to verify whether their employees are legally in the country. Penalties for violations include hefty fines and the possible revocation of business licenses.
While the legislation does not go into effect until July, its impact is already evident. Videos have gone viral on social media recently showing empty construction sites, indicating that illegal aliens living in the state have already stopped showing up to work. Many anti-borders activists have decried the scenes of empty construction sites, lamenting that it could hurt business and development in the state. This morally bankrupt mentality explains the steady erosion of U.S. sovereignty in recent decades.
Politicians, business leaders, and activists have normalized illegal immigration as a way to import low-wage workers and boost the profits of corporations. Programs like E-Verify are necessary to ensure that American citizens are not being unfairly denied job opportunities by employers seeking to import cheap foreign labor.
The empty construction sites throughout Florida are further evidence of how big the illegal alien population in the U.S. has become and demonstrate how they are taking jobs and driving down wages for American workers. The newly-open jobs at these Florida construction sites should be used to put more Americans to work, not to import more foreign nationals for businesses to exploit through substandard wages. Plenty of Americans are willing and able to work these jobs, and now, thanks to this legislation, they will have the opportunity to do so in one of the largest, fastest-growing states in the country.
Given that most illegal aliens come to the U.S. for economic opportunities, there are few better ways to confirm employment eligibility and protect American workers than E-Verify. E-Verify is more than 99 percent effective at ensuring that employees’ are lawfully in the country, according to the Bipartisan Policy Center. The success of E-Verify is indisputable, yet only eight states have adopted its use, with Florida set to become the ninth. Despite its success, E-Verify still faces hardened opposition not just from big business but from some civil liberty advocates as well.
Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) voted against a House of Representatives bill that would mandate E-Verify across the country, saying that he believes the program’s use of biometrics could threaten the rights of Americans. Former Texas Rep. Ron Paul referred to the program as a “massive surveillance threat.” Unlike much of the opposition from corporate America, these criticisms of the program are being made in good faith.
Still, opponents of E-Verify lack any realistic alternative. There is no better way to ensure employers are not violating the law by employing illegal aliens. Given the massive amount of foreign nationals who want to come to the U.S., processes must be in place to address the huge job magnet that incentivizes foreign nationals to come here illegally and also negatively affects the ability of American citizens to find work. Policymakers must be able to ensure that illegal aliens are not exploiting our immigration system while also protecting the rights of Americans. E-Verify accomplishes this.
With Florida becoming the biggest state to implement E-Verify, it will become a sanctuary for American workers, who opportunistic politicians and business leaders have forgotten for too long. The Sunshine State has become a shining example of how to protect American workers and deter illegal immigration. Other states should follow its lead.
William J. Davis is a communications associate for the Immigration Reform Law Institute, a public interest law firm working to defend the rights and interests of the American people from the negative effects of mass migration.
Also published at Townhall, May 25, 2023.
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