Illegal immigration

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Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah) penned a new piece of legislation that would make the E-Verify system a permanent tool to help reduce illegal immigration in the United States.

As IJR previously explained, E-Verify is an electronic verification system operated by the federal government that allows employers to check the legal status of the employees they hire. All the employers need to do is submit the employee’s full name, date of birth, and Social Security number into the system to be confirmed.

This ensures that any employee hired by a company has the proper legal status to be working in the United States. Currently, E-Verify is not required by the federal government, though two states — Mississippi and Arizona — do require that employees are E-Verified. All federal employees are required to be E-Verified.

While it seems like Republicans — who have been fighting Democrats to end illegal immigration — would be in sync on E-Verify, that hasn’t been the case as some Republicans see E-Verify as another burdensome regulation on employers.

Others argue that the E-Verify system doesn’t go far enough because illegal immigrants with properly forged documents wouldn’t be flagged because the information would pass a cross-reference.

Republicans will need to continue to battle this out, but Romney’s plan is even simpler than that. The goal of Romney’s Permanent E-Verify Act is to protect the E-Verify system as a whole.

As it stands today, the E-Verify system could be terminated at the whim of Congress because it requires continued renewal to keep the system in operation.

Romney’s bill would make E-Verify a permanent fixture…

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Source: The Washington Pundit

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Mexican officials detained nearly 800 undocumented migrants in eastern Mexico in four trucks on Saturday, the government said, in one of the biggest swoops against illegal immigration in recent months.

Mexico’s National Migration Institute (INM) said in a statement late on Saturday that 791 foreign nationals were found in the trucks stopped in the eastern state of Veracruz, confirming earlier reports about a mass detention.

The apprehension came as Mexico steps up efforts to reduce a surge of migrants toward the U.S. border under pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump, who has vowed to hit Mexican goods with tariffs if Mexico does not stem illegal immigration.

Mexico made a deal on June 7 with the United States to avert the tariffs, setting the clock ticking on a 45-day period for the Mexican government to make palpable progress in reducing the numbers of people trying to cross the U.S. border illegally.

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Source: The Washington Pundit

Sen. Mitt Romney moved Wednesday on an immigration proposal he claims would address one reason hundreds of thousands have illegally crossed into the U.S. since October, and the bill could find an unexpected supporter in President Trump.

Romney on Wednesday introduced the Permanent E-Verify Act, which would turn the E-Verify program into a permanent fixture within the U.S. employment system. The introduction marks the first immigration item Romney has proposed since taking office in January, according to his aide.

“Congress needs to act now to address our illegal immigration crisis by closing legal loopholes and removing the magnets — like illegal unemployment — that drive illegal immigration,” Romney said in a statement. “My home state of Utah has already taken a step to reduce illegal employment by requiring employers to use E-Verify. I urge my colleagues to take action on this important legislation to make E-Verify permanent, and continue working on long term fixes to secure the border, update our asylum and trafficking laws, and institute mandatory E-Verify nationwide.”

E-Verify is an online tool that allows employers to input a new hire’s driver’s license and Social Security information to verify whether the person’s identity is legitimate and eligible for work. Hiring an undocumented immigrant is a federal crime.

All federal government employees and contractors must be cleared through E-Verify prior to being hired, but enrollment for the private sector is voluntary. The bill would not force all private entities to enroll or use the program, just make its renewal — usually done by Congress every year — a thing of the past.

E-Verify initially rolled out in 1996 as a pilot program by the Clinton administration and is now administered by the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. It is set to expire at the end of September.

The White House is in the process of piecing together an immigration reform bill that has been reported as likely to include E-Verify. Trump has endorsed the policy but not moved on any executive action that would make it a permanent program or force companies to enroll.

Romney and Trump are known foes who have criticized each other since the 2016 presidential election. At the time, Trump ripped the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, saying if he had fought as heard as he did against Trump in 2016, he would have beat former President Barack Obama four years earlier.

Romney’s office has not indicated if it expects the White House to endorse the bill.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., on Monday refused to credit President Trump for reaching a deal to get Mexico to stop illegal immigration.

Schumer called the accord “nothing more than warmed-up leftovers,” and said Trump had simply backed down on a threat to impose new tariffs on Mexican imports because that is how he normally operates.

“The president stakes out a maximalist position but never clearly defines his objectives,” Schumer said on the Senate floor.

“That way, after he backs himself into a corner, he can use a deal of any kind, even if it’s merely a fig leaf, to justify retreating from whatever misguided policy he’s threatened,” Schumer continued. “Then he declares victory, having done little or nothing to solve the problem.”

Schumer cited news reports claiming Mexico denies having signed a deal with Trump to rein in illegal immigration through Mexico from Central America.

“It’s amazing how this president will just make stuff up,” Schumer said. “He just makes it up and then it’s refuted.”

Trump said the deal with Mexico “will be revealed in the not too distant future.”

Trump criticized a New York Times story reporting there is no signed deal to make any new changes to Mexico’s policy for dealing with the migrants, who are approaching the U.S. border at numbers topping 100,000 per month.

Mexico has agreed to do more to stop the flow of migrants by following a previously negotiated deal with the United States. But any change to asylum laws that the United States is seeking would have to be approved by the Mexican Senate, according to the Times story.

“The agreement that President Trump reached with Mexico contains policies negotiated months ago,” Schumer said. “Nothing more than warmed-up leftovers.”

Trump Said Dems do not get “do-overs” in the Russia investigation. Sadly They Are Full Steam.. Are You Tired Of The Left Wasting Our money?

Watergate figure in the spotlight as Dems begin hearings on Mueller report
John Dean, the former White House counsel to Richard Nixon and a key figure in the Watergate scandal, is expected to be frontand center on Capitol Hill on Monday, as House Democrats are set to begin a series of hearings this coming week seeking to keep the spotlight on See More Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report. Although the week could end with Attorney General William Barr and formerWhite House counsel Donald McGahn in contempt of Congress, no formal impeachment inquiry is on the table, and the way forward remains unclear. Prominent Democrats have continued to support the investigative “path” — in the words of Speaker Nancy Pelosi — that some of them publicly hope will lead to impeachment. Trump slammed the hearings on Sunday, calling Dean, who is also a CNN contributor, a “sleazebag attorney” and that Dems do not get “do-overs” in the Russia investigation.

Mexico still in Trump tariff crosshairs
Even as he again hailed his administration’s last-minute deal on Friday with Mexico as a “successful agreement” to address illegal immigration at the southern border, President Trump on Sunday bluntly suggested he might again seek to impose punishing tariffs on Mexico if its cooperation falls short in the future. The president and other key administration officials also sharply disputed a New York Times report claiming the deal “largely” had been negotiated months ago, and hinted that not all major details of the new arrangement have yet been made public.

California to give illegal immigrants full health benefits
In a stance to distance itself from President Trump’s administration, California is set to become the first state in the country to pay for tens of thousands of illegal immigrants to have full health benefits. Under an agreement between Gov. Gavin Newsom and Democrats in the state legislature as part of a broader $213 billion budget, low-income adultsbetween the ages of 19 and 25 living in California illegally would be eligible for California’s Medicaid program, known as Medi-Cal. The plan would take effect in January 2020, the Sacramento Bee reported.

‘Big Papi’ shot in the Dominican Republic
Former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz was ambushed by a man who got off a motorcycle and shot him in the back at nearly point-blank range in a nightclub in his native Dominican Republic on Sunday. A local reporter who said he’d spoken with the doctor who treated Ortiz told ESPN that a bullet had hit Ortiz’s lower back and came out his stomach. Police said Ortiz was transferred to a hospital where he underwent surgery. He’s reportedly now in stable condition. A witness at the scene said a suspect who was at the scene is in custody. Other circumstances surrounding the shooting were unclear.

ICYMI: A fourth U.S. tourist death at Dominican Republic resort
A fourth U.S. tourist died after he fell critically and suddenly ill at an all-inclusive resort in the Dominican Republic this past April, about a month before three others died in their rooms, Fox News has learned. Robert Bell Wallace, 67, of California, became ill almost immediately after he had a scotch from the room minibar at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino resort in Punta Cana, his niece, Chloe Arnold, told Fox News on Sunday. He was in the Dominican Republic to attend his stepson’s wedding.

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resident Donald Trump said on Friday that the United States and Mexico have signed an agreement to avoid tariffs that were scheduled to go into effect on Monday.

Trump said that Mexico in return has agreed to take “strong measures” to stop illegal migration from coming through the U.S. southern border. 

Mexico’s Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard also announced that the U.S. would not impose tariffs. Ebrard said on Thursday that Mexico would deploy its national guard to its southern borderwith Guatemala in an effort to slow migration from Central America.  

Last week, Trump had threatened to impose 5% tariffs on all Mexican imports starting June 10 if Mexico didn’t do more to stop illegal immigration. Those tariffs were set to gradually increase to 25% over the coming months if Mexico did not meet the White House’s demands. 

Trump’s abrupt decision to target Mexico shook markets, which were already facing uncertainty over the escalating trade war between the U.S. and China. 

The Dow dropped 3% the week ending May 31, posting its sixth weekly loss and its longest losing streak since 2011. Trump’s tariff threat had sent the peso reeling against the dollar and put pressure on automakers such as GM, Ford and Fiat which produce cars in Mexico. 

Amid concerns that Trump was opening another trade war, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said on Tuesday that the central bank is “closely monitoring the implications of these developments for the U.S. economic outlook and, as always, we will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion.”

The Dow closed up on Friday, posting its best week since November, on the hope that the Federal Reserve would cut interest rates.

Mexico President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrado had quickly signaled that he was willing to cut a deal to avoid tariffs by tightening immigration controls. 

Mexican and U.S. officials met in Washington this week to discuss the border and Trump indicated that there was a good chance tariffs would be averted.

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Source: The Washington Pundit

President Trump said Friday evening the U.S. had reached a deal with Mexico and he “indefinitely suspended” impending tariffs on imports.

Trump said Mexico agreed to implement “strong measures” to decrease migration through Mexico to the United States’ southern border.

“This is being done to greatly reduce, or eliminate, Illegal Immigration coming from Mexico and into the United States,” he said in a tweet.

Those measures included Mexico deploying its national guard to its southern border, according to a joint declaration released by the State Department. The agreement allows the U.S. to “rapidly” return asylum seekers to Mexico, where they will be offered jobs, healthcare, and education while their asylum claims are being processed. The U.S. said it would work to accelerate the processing of asylum claims.

“We would like to thank Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard for his hard work to negotiate a set of joint obligations that benefit both the United States and Mexico. The United States looks forward to working alongside Mexico to fulfill these commitments so that we can stem the tide of illegal migration across our southern border and to make our border strong and secure,” said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement.

The Trump administration was set to impose a 5% added tax on all Mexican imports beginning Monday if a deal was not reached to stem the flow of Central American migrants crossing into the U.S.

Congress had warned that the tariffs could harm the U.S. economy.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed more than 250 points Friday, ending the index’s best week of the year, as lackluster economic news prompted speculation that the Federal Reserve would lower interest rates.

Lower rates make it cheaper for companies to borrow money, a boost for both investment in new projects and repayment of higher-rate debt. The blue-chip index’s close at 25,983 , a weekly gain of 4.7%, still remained below its highs earlier this year.

The broader S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq were up 4.4% and 3.9%, respectively. The three major indices are often viewed as a measure of the U.S. stock market as a whole.

President Trump celebrated the index’s uptick upon his return from a week in Europe where he commemorated the 75th anniversary of D-Day.

The news came hours after the administration announced that the U.S. economy added only 75,000 jobs in May, the second time in four months that jobs growth was less than 100,000.

Economists at major investment banks said the mediocre gains would likely prompt Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell to follow through on hints that the central bank would cut rates, particularly if Trump imposed tariffs that he had threatened on Mexican goods. That would have escalated an already-sprawling trade war.

Late Friday evening, however, the White House announced that a last-minute deal in which Mexico agreed to help curb illegal immigration across the U.S. border had rendered the duties unnecessary.

If there’s an upside for the White House in May’s lackluster employment growth, it’s this: the Federal Reserve is far more likely to grant the interest-rate cut President Trump has been advocating for months.

The odds of a 25 basis-point reduction in short-term rates this month nearly doubled on Friday, based on trading in rate futures, after data from the U.S. Labor Department showed employers added just 75,000 jobs last month.

Less than half the average prediction of 182,500 from economists, the number offers a worrisome indicator as Trump broadens a sprawling trade war with new tariffs on Mexico and China. Economists, business executives, and lawmakers have all warned that the duties, which Trump says are necessary to achieve U.S. policy goals, risk undercutting U.S. economic growth buoyed by GOP-led tax cuts in late 2017.

“This is a game-changer for the Fed going forward,” said Joseph Song, an economist with Charlotte, N.C.-based Bank of America, which now predicts two interest-rate cuts in the second half of this year and a third in 2020. Reductions of 25 basis points each time would take short-term rates to a range of 1.5%-1.75%.

Growth is “clearly starting to slow,” Song told the Washington Examiner, “and this is well before any additional tariffs go on. If and when those tariffs go into effect, it could be leading into a growth recession in the coming months.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell has suggested the central bank is open to cutting rates, reversing its outlook late last year, if the economy begins to slow due to trade conflicts. Already, the Fed has begun to taper the slow wind-down of a balance sheet that swelled to $4.5 trillion through quantitative easing to buoy the economy after the financial crisis.

“There’s no doubt a slowdown is under way. The question is, does it foreshadow a downturn?” said Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst for

“Uncertainty has been injected into the environment by the Trump administration, which we are led to believe was done because of the best of intentions,” he added. “President Trump absolutely unleashed animal spirits in a positive way at the early part of the administration, and now that’s been turned upside down.”

U.S. financial markets surged during Trump’s first year in office, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbing 25% as investors bet that Trump and a Republican-controlled Congress would loosen regulations from the Obama era and reduce taxes.

When that paid off with a GOP-led tax bill that reduced the top corporate rate to 21% from 35%, major indexes touched new records before retreating as Trump set tariffs on metal and aluminum and imposed stiff duties on Chinese imports.

In May alone, the Dow Jones fell as much 7% from this year’s high of 26,656 when the president said he would more than double levies on $200 billion of Chinese goods to 25% after trade negotiators reached an impasse, then followed up with a plan to tack comparable duties onto Mexican goods unless the country helped curb illegal immigration into the U.S.

Trump nonetheless remains confident that his tactics will pay off. “China wants to make a deal badly,” he told reporters on Thursday. “And I think Mexico wants to make a deal badly.”

In the interim, however, the Fed will probably have to reduce rates to insulate the U.S. economy, said Michael Gapen, an economist with British lender Barclays PLC, which predicts rates will drop by 75 basis points before the end of December. That might alleviate some of the tension in Trump’s relationship with the Fed chairman he hand-picked to succeed Janet Yellen.

Powell fell from favor less than a year after his 2018 appointment when the president blamed December stock-market volatility on the central bank’s four rate hikes within a 12-month period.

Trump, who was told then that he lacked the power to fire Powell without cause, has alternately berated and pushed the Fed since December, noting before the monetary policy committee’s May meeting that the U.S. economic growth buoying his reelection bid would be even stronger if the central bank would only lower interest rates.

The U.S. and Mexico failed to reach an agreement Wednesday to avert tariffs after a meeting between officials of the two countries.

President Trump said progress is being made, but if no agreement is reached, 5% tariffs on Mexican goods will be instituted Monday.

“The higher the Tariffs go, the higher the number of companies that will move back to the USA!” he tweeted.

The talks held at the White House were an attempt to reach a deal over the impending tariffs, which would increase an additional 5% each month until Mexico addresses illegal immigration at the U.S. border.

The news comes the day after Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said he believed a deal to be close that would end the administration’s threat to impose tariffs on Mexico in response to illegal immigration. Trump has said he wants Mexico to stop the flow of immigrants from Central America through the country and to the U.S. border.

Speaking from Ireland on Wednesday, Trump expressed confidence that Mexico would beef up its immigration policies in order to prevent the economic squeeze the tariffs would entail.

“Mexico can stop it. They have to stop it. Otherwise, we just won’t be able to do business. It’s a very simple thing,” Trump said Wednesday. “And I think they will stop it. I think they want to do something. I think they want to make a deal. And they sent their top people to try.”

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