Saturday, October 13, 2007


This week a federal judge slapped down one of the "new rules" implemented by the White House to "curb" illegal immigration. The new rules were promulgated shortly after Congress failed to pass an immigration reform bill. The judge gave two very good reasons why the rule in question should be placed "on delay." Thursday's NY Times has the story.

A federal judge in San Francisco ordered an indefinite delay yesterday of a central measure of the Bush administration’s new strategy to curb illegal immigration.

The judge, Charles R. Breyer of the Northern District of California, said the government had failed to follow proper procedures for issuing a new rule that would have forced employers to fire workers if their Social Security numbers could not be verified within three months.

Judge Breyer chastised the Department of Homeland Security for making a policy change with “massive ramifications” for employers, without giving any legal explanation or conducting a required survey of the costs and impact for small businesses. ...

Judge Breyer found that the Social Security database that the rule would draw upon was laden with errors not related to a worker’s immigration status, which could result in no-match letters being sent to legally authorized workers. “There is a strong likelihood that employers may simply fire employees who are unable to resolve the discrepancy within 90 days,” even if they are legal, he wrote. ...

In a December 2006 report cited in the court documents, the inspector general of the Social Security Administration estimated that 17.8 million of the agency’s 435 million individual records contained discrepancies that could result in a no-match letter being sent to a legally authorized worker. Of those records with errors, 12.7 million belonged to native-born Americans, the report found.

In a Sept. 18 letter to Mr. Chertoff, the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business Administration supported a claim in the suit that federal officials had failed to carry out a required analysis of the impact on small businesses before announcing the new rule. The office is independent from the Small Business Administration, which supported the rule.
[Emphasis added]

Imagine that, the White House failed to follow required procedure before issuing rules for a federal agency.

Why does George Bush hate small businesses?

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