Thursday, July 18, 2024

Senators Cassidy, Romney, and Cotton Introduce Mandatory E-Verify Act to Combat Illegal Immigration

by BIZ Magazine

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Mitt Romney (R-UT), and Tom Cotton (R-AR) have introduced the Mandatory E-Verify Act of 2024, aiming to mandate the use of the federal electronic E-Verify system by all employers to confirm the employment eligibility of their workforce. The proposed legislation is a response to President Biden’s recent executive order on asylum claims, which the senators criticize for not addressing the millions of illegal immigrants already in the United States and failing to remove the employment incentives driving illegal immigration.

“Employers must make every effort to ensure they are hiring American citizens and legal residents only,” stated Dr. Cassidy. “E-Verify is an obvious step we can take toward cutting illegal labor and protecting American jobs.”

Senator Romney echoed this sentiment, saying, “President Biden’s last-ditch effort to limit asylum is too little, too late. Millions of illegal immigrants have already flooded into our country under his watch, and his executive order falls short in stopping widespread illegal employment. By requiring all employers to use E-Verify, our legislation would ensure that businesses only hire legal workers—eliminating a key driver of illegal immigration and protecting jobs for hardworking Americans.”

Senator Cotton added, “American workers today compete against millions of illegal immigrants for too few jobs—that’s unfair. Ending the black market for illegal labor will open up jobs for Americans. Our legislation will take the necessary steps to make sure every potential employer is hiring only legal workers.”

Key Provisions of the Mandatory E-Verify Act of 2024:

  • Mandate E-Verify for all employers: Implementation will be phased in over 18 months to allow small businesses to comply.
  • Increase penalties: Civil and criminal penalties will be raised for employers who hire unauthorized aliens and/or violate I-9 paperwork requirements.
  • Prevent fraud: Workers 18 and older will be required to provide a photo ID to their employer for verification, which will be cross-referenced if a photo is available through the E-Verify system.

Background:

One of the main drivers of illegal immigration is the lack of adequate safeguards against unlawful employment in the U.S. job market. In 2021, approximately 7.8 million illegal immigrants were part of the U.S. labor force. Since then, undocumented migrant encounters reported by U.S. Border Patrol have surged to over 9.6 million. A recent Rasmussen Reports survey indicated that 68% of likely voters believe the government should mandate employers to use E-Verify to ensure they hire only legal workers.

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