Obama didn’t come close to doing that in El Paso. He included a few words about letting in more high-skill folks, but he didn’t suggest any reduction in low-skill immigration.
And he said only a few words about workplace enforcement, on which his administration has developed a valuable new tool.
That’s a refinement of the E-Verify electronic system now available, in which employers can verify the Social Security numbers of new employees.
The Department of Homeland Security has been ironing out glitches in E-Verify, and, as former National Security Agency general counsel Stewart Baker reports, DHS now allows job-seekers in some states to use E-Verify before applying for a job not only to check their status but also to protect against identity theft.
The administration has been attacking state laws requiring employers to use E-Verify. If Obama were serious about enforcement, he would be calling for mandatory E-Verify. That would be a more effective tool against illegal immigration than even the strongest border enforcement.
But as Obama’s record makes clear, he’s not really interested in passing a law. He knows his support has been slipping among Latino voters, and he wants to goose it back up. El Paso was all about election 2012, not serious immigration reform.
— Michael Barone, senior political analyst for the Washington Examiner, is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a Fox News Channel contributor, and a co-author of The Almanac of American Politics. Copyright © 2011 The Washington Examiner