Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis recently released a taxpayer funded bilingual public service announcement (click here to watch) advertising a hotline established for workers, documented and “undocumented,” to call in to if they believe they are not being “fairly” compensated.
At a time when the nation is facing double digit unemployment in many places, including in my home state of California, the Obama administration has once again demonstrated how misplaced its priorities truly are. Using taxpayer dollars to reassure illegal alien workers that they too have a right to be paid “fairly” for the illegal work they have performed is an affront to hard working American citizens and legal immigrants who are struggling to make ends meet in these harsh economic times.
Rooting out worker exploitation is a laudable goal and the Department of Labor should pursue worker complaints. However, the first obligation and duty of a responsible government is to its citizens. If the administration truly wants to improve the plight of American workers as a whole, it must first strictly enforce our immigration laws by ensuring all workers are legal workers.
The administration cannot continue to shirk it responsibilities by turning a blind eye to lawbreakers in order to pacify a political demographic that the party in power believes it needs at the ballot box.
This type of selective enforcement not only continues to force American workers to compete against the influx of cheap illegal labor bidding down wages but it further undermines the administration’s credibility on true immigration reform.
Instead of filing lawsuits and sanctioning boycotts against Arizona for taking steps to actually enforce the law where the feds have dropped the ball, the administration should be securing our border and targeting employers who continue to provide jobs for illegal workers. That way they can cut off the lifeblood of economic incentives provided by the prospect of employment in the United States.
The American worker is already facing a hostile economic environment, stagnant private sector job growth and an increased tax burden due to the exponential expansion of government by this administration.
Yet the Obama administration marches on -- pushing for amnesty of millions of illegal immigrants, acting politically tone deaf to the economic hardships faced by the legal citizens it’s obligated to constitutionally protect. And that’s certainly not “fair” to them.
Republican Congressman Dana Rohrabacher represents California's 46th district in the U.S. House of Representatives.
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