The New Holy Alliance

By: Daniel Nardini

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Commentary What do the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce have in common? They are both vehemently opposed to the federal E-Verify program. They have good reasons for it. The U.S. Hispanic Chamber is against it because it hurts small businesses. Not just Latino businesses but all small businesses. The U.S. Hispanic Chamber points out that it is a time-consuming process to check and re-check all of their employees. Besides, as has been pointed out, the E-Verify program is full of errors. An employee who could indeed be a U.S. citizen may be listed in the E-Verify program as not having a valid Social Security number when in fact they do.

As the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce will point out, small businesses are what drives this economy. At this time they are having a hard time because of the Great Recession. Recently, U.S. House Representative Lamar Smith (Republican-Texas) has introduced a bill to make E-Verify mandatory throughout the United States. The chances for the bill are slim, but the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has tried to push the E-Verify program for all businesses on its own. Also, U.S. President Barack Obama is using the federal tax laws to nail companies as well as try to force them to accept the E-Verify program.

If small businesses are adversely affected then the whole country could go into a tail-spin into an economic depression. The SEIU for its part wants to protect the rights of workers at the workplace. If undocumented workers can be arrested, jailed and deported then the unions cannot protect their own membership. Worse, it means that all workers’ rights issues are being trumped by draconian immigration laws. And if small businesses—which are the engines for the U.S. economy—are destroyed then this will put even more workers on the unemployment line. And what good are unions without small businesses?

So the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the SEIU have this in common. More than that, they have the U.S. economy to think about. If the U.S. economy continues with nine percent unemployment, a growing poverty rate, and a huge national debt, then this will destroy small businesses and ultimately destroy unions. Both cannot exist alone. And both cannot exist if the U.S. economy is bad. If the economy gets better than this generates jobs, and this generates people able to pay taxes. The revenue then brings down the national debt, and this works for the U.S. government ultimately. Why the U.S. government cannot understand this equation is beyond economic logic. At least two forces in a holy alliance to rescue this country do understand what it means for all Americans.

Comments are closed.