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Talent Supports Amnesty For Illegal Employers

Location: St. Louis, MO

Talent Supports Amnesty For Illegal Employers

June 15, 2006

Talent Is Their #1 Senator To Fund in 2006

McCaskill Outlines Tough Plan to Secure Borders and Crack Down on Corporations That Employ Illegal Immigrants

ST. LOUIS -- U.S. Senate Candidate Claire McCaskill stated today that Senator Jim Talent supports amnesty for employers who give American jobs to illegal immigrants based on his issue position and record. Talent is listed as the number one Senator to fund by five big agricultural corporations, including Tyson Foods Inc., with ties to hiring illegal workers and, as a result, Talent has allowed illegal immigration enforcement to go by the wayside. McCaskill outlined her plan to crack down on those who violate our laws.

"This is about being on the side of American workers. The Bush Administration and Senator Talent have allowed our borders to become Swiss cheese and our immigration laws to become meaningless," McCaskill said. "We need tougher border security. We need to prosecute illegal immigrants. But we also need to attack the problem at the source -- a true crack down on the corporations, like Tysons, that employ these workers for cheap labor. If they don't have those jobs anymore, they don't have a reason to stay."

McCaskill outlined an aggressive proposal to increase border security and institute stricter regulations on employers that exploit illegal immigrants for cheap labor. McCaskill said it was outrageous for the Administration and Congress to have failed to fully fund Border Patrol agents until an election year. Due to their negligence, there are now 12 million undocumented workers in the United State. A security fence and increased surveillance are only the first steps to addressing this crisis.

McCaskill stated that current penalties are meaningless to giant corporations. She proposed that first time offenders of hiring illegal workers are fined $10,000 per illegal immigrant and receive up to 6 months in jail; second time offenders are fined $25,000 per illegal immigrant and receive up to 1 year in jail, and third time offenders are fined $50,000 per illegal immigrant and receive no less than one year in jail. McCaskill also proposed instituting a new electronic employment verification system, which Talent opposed, and designating more workplace inspectors to investigate violations. She also called for the creation of an Assistant Attorney General to head immigration litigation and enforcement in the Federal Courts.

"If Senator Talent wants to start talking tough about immigration as an election year tactic, he's going to have to explain why he hasn't fought for our American jobs by enforcing our immigration laws," McCaskill said.

McCaskill illustrated how the Administration and Congress systematically dismantled all meaningful enforcement of employers of illegal immigrants under their watch. From the early 1990's, when Talent first came to Washington, to 2003, the audits of companies hiring illegal immigrants dropped by 77%. The number of companies sanctioned for hiring illegal immigrants also dropped by 99.6% -- 909 employers were fined in 1995, 240 were fined in 1999, 124 in 2003 and only three employers were fined for hiring illegal immigrants in 2004.

McCaskill continued, "Senator Talent's record shows clearly who he is fighting for in Washington -- the companies that are fueling the immigration crisis. It's no surprise that in all of his tough rhetoric Senator Talent has been silent on tougher employer sanctions after taking such large campaign contributions from corporations that have been cited or even prosecuted for illegal immigration violations."

In addition to the thousands he received from corporate farming political action committees, Talent is this year's number one Senator to fund for five big agricultural corporations that have ties to hiring illegal immigrants.


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