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August 20, 2009


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If you make every employer only hire residents, you would reduce the imcome tax take overall. Illegals, when they are subject to tax withholding don't ussually file for a refund. They also pay all the other taxes that the rest of us do like sales tax, property tax through their rents and others. But, as a group receive much less of the beneifts. Also, if you look at the numbers that the labor department publishes, illegals have been growing at a steady rate in the country for three decades. All of this while unemployment was rising and falling. Is seems that the illegals have little real effect on unemployment one way or another. Finally, if Rep. Agema wants to keep illegals from getting jobs, fine. But why does he have to continue the myths to justify his actions?

Morris Hagerman

I agree with Mr. Hagerman, on at least a couple of points. Yes, as he says, illegal workers often "pay" withholding and FICA and other taxes without getting a return.

And yes, the Michigan Cahmber of Commerce is routinely right about issues of employment and economics (though it would probably be fatal to Mr. Lessenberry to admit it), and they are right to oppose this particular legislation.

But I ask, what is so bad about enforcement of our well-established immigration laws? I don't think it is right or appropriate to wink at such laws, no matter how many suburban lawns need mowing.

But here's another thing -- Mr. Lessenberry states; "many of them [illegals] help keep the economy humming by doing the jobs that we don't want to do." Mr. Lessenberry is correct. But why? Why do we have a whole class of people who need work, and who should be working, but don't work because some of that work is undesirable to them, such that foreign nationals enter the country illegally and take those jobs?

Could someone explain why it is that we apparently have a large number of illegal aliens working in Michigan, while teen unemployment in Detroit is, what -- 25%? 50%? 75%?

Dear Mr. Lessenberry,

This article is fictitious. In all due respect, please get your facts straight. Either you are for illegal activity, or you are against it, period. Agema is for diversity and that is not the issue here. The issue is what is in accordance to our constitution and what is not.

You said, "there is still one group who you can trash with impunity: illegal immigrants. If someone were writing the poem on the Statue of Liberty today, they would probably have it say, "Give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore -- and we'll kick them out."

Let me remind you that our constitution only applies to individuals here in our country legally. The so-called melting pot of America only refers to those whom respected American law. Our country is not an anarchy. Illegal does and always will mean against the law..

Scheme? This system has been supported at the federal level by the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. The state of MI is following the federal lead under the Obama administration.

According to what I have researched, the committee testimony states that the e-verify system is the best, most equipped program in existence. The 4 percent error rate is a total farce. Most of those are illegal. The others are those that have provided false, non-updated information to the government...they have a chance to correct the information before they are held accountable.

This bill is about saving taxpayer dollars, -- the money taxpayers spend on public education, welfare, emergency room costs, and welfare. Do you think the illegal aliens that take these jobs are making enough (often under the table) to afford life in the US? There are avenues in which they can serve and earn legally...allowing them to at least make minimum wage. Dave Agema's bill protects legal workers and promotes equal pay.

Trash illegal immigrants? They're illegal. Which in other words means "in violation of the law."

By allowing illegal aliens into the workforce, we are basically allowing illegal competition. Contractors are buying jobs for a lesser rate with companies that allow illegal aliens to work for them rather than forcing them to comply and compete with companies that are legally servicing our workforce and communities. This is rewarding illegal activity, as they are illegal aliens, and quite frankly, nobody wins. Neither the illegal alien who is working often times under the table at a rate far below the minimum wage, or the taxpayer who has to make up for that through emergency room visits, public education, and welfare (because in reality no one can live off of their under-the-table wages).

4% error rate? Where are you getting your numbers from? The 4% includes those that are illegal. The other .4% (point four) includes many that have simply made a mistake or have changed their name or status. Agema's bill requires a time frame to fix those discrepancies.

The Chamber of Commerce opposes the bill...why exactly? And I ask that again...why? How does the Agema bill HB 4355 affect the Chamber? The bill addresses state contracted employees. Mr. Lessenberry, were you actually there to hear the committee testimony on the bill? After doing my research I understand there were those from the small business community that testified and stated that the e-verification program is of no burden what-so-ever. It has no expense and takes very little time...I'm just not sure where you are getting your information from. Are you a Chamber member?. Why don't you seek the advice and research the opinion of the reputable business groups such as the NFIB or the SBAM?

As for why unemployed people in America not wanting to take jobs? They don't need them. They have a year and a half of free money called unemployment. Let's go back to our roots and start a concept called a work ethic.

As for your last paragraph? Yea, why don't you do a study on that and report it? Does anything surprise you about Detroit? Why don't you report on the annual appropriation of the state of MI that are invested into Detroit verses anywhere else in the state?

Finally, as for Agema going on a hunting trip…he was assured in advance that he could go on his trip. It is the Governor that decides last minute of the voting schedule. She will likely wait last minute again to finally schedule appropriations bills before the end of our fiscal year. She loves drama, and she loves control. Let's look at this for what it really is. Let's see the truth of the matter -- called law. Please respect it Mr. Lessenberry.

Much obliged.

If you would like more information, call me or respond.


Karen hit the same nail on the head twice. WHO could possibly support a family on the minimum wage? Not the illegals, nor the citizens without education and work skills. "Unemployment" runs out at 18 months, then "welfare" kicks in. Sooo, If we hadn't "dumbed down" our education system, or had parents who had lost control of their kids, they'd be able to get better jobs. BUT, they didn't and we, again, must deal with the notion that our legal citizens wouldn't do those jobs as gardeners/landscapers, nannies, hotel maids, etc., BECAUSE those rich enough to hire them, don't want to pay even minimum wage. Giving amnesty to those that subvert our constitution isn't the solution. In fact all the monies we spend on services to them could go to bringing our education system up to speed, without having to teach anything in Spanish.
We all know there will always be those that will not go beyond high school and still want to be able to support a family. Why not put our resources and efforts where it belongs: with our citizens.

Let's have respect for the truth, Karen. You said, "Our constitution only applies to individuals here in our country legally."

That is simply, flatly, totally, and utterly false. The Constitution, first and foremost, applies to the government. But in many of the places where it refers to people, and many of the rights it protects, it applies to all persons in the U.S., not just citizens or the law-abiding. Consider an illegal immigrant who has been arrested. Do you suppose the government could deport him without due process? Summarily execute him? Why or why not?

The answer in both cases is, of course, no, because the Constitution does apply, and it binds what the government can and cannot do, even to an illegal immigrant. I would suggest the next time you feel like making rash statements about the Constitution in public you run them past a lawyer first so you don't wind up with egg on your face.

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