Patterico's Pontifications


Catch-22: Obama DoJ Now Telling Employers They Can’t Check Employees’ Immigration Status

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:54 am

First employers were told they might get in trouble if they check prospective employees’ criminal records or credit histories. Now this:

Employers who hire illegal immigrants can be fined, but the Obama administration warned this week that they also can be fined for asking legal immigrants to show their green cards before hiring them.

The Justice Department’s civil rights division sued the Maricopa County Community Colleges in Arizona, seeking damages from schools for having “intentionally committed document abuse discrimination.”

Prior to this year, the local colleges in the Phoenix area asked job applicants who were not U.S. citizens to show a driver’s license, a Social Security card and their permanent resident card, commonly called a green card.

The Justice Department said a valid driver’s license and a Social Security card are usually sufficient to show that a person is authorized to work. Requesting a green card amounts to “immigration-related employment discrimination,” said Thomas E. Perez, the assistant attorney general for civil rights.

Damned if you check, damned if you don’t.

This is what you get when you elect a Democrat, folks.

52 Responses to “Catch-22: Obama DoJ Now Telling Employers They Can’t Check Employees’ Immigration Status”

  1. How “funny”… Whenever I have gotten a new job over the last several decades–I have had to prove my residency (I use my US Passport).

    Driver’s licenses (at least before 9-11) and SSN have never documented proof of residency.

    In California, you cannot even ask for proof of residency from potential tenants.

    BfC (e660ad)

  2. Last two jobs I got, I had to supply
    proof of citizenship.

    Jack (e383ed)

  3. “Rules. We make em up as we go along”

    Alcee Hastings 2010

    elissa (5953ce)

  4. Both my daughters received an “Employment Authorization Card” before their immigration visas were finally complete. They were supposedly not allowed to work without showing their card. I guess I supposed wrongly despite the clear language on the card.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  5. “Last two jobs I got, I had to supply
    proof of citizenship.”

    Same here.

    Guess I should have claimed I was an illegal alien. That way I’d be immune to government snooping, and could get all kinds of special protections from the Jin Crow-o-crats.

    Dave Surls (985699)

  6. This is ridiculous.

    I hate to say it, but if employers can’t check immigration status, they should suffer no penalties whatsoever for hiring illegal aliens unless the state can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt they were aware they were hiring illegal aliens.

    Of course, to Obama, that’s a feature, not a bug.

    Christoph (8ec277)

  7. Requesting a green card amounts to “immigration-related employment discrimination,” said Thomas E. Perez, the assistant attorney general for civil rights.

    Under the law, employers are supposed to engage in ““immigration-related employment discrimination”. That’s why we issue green cards in the first place – so that people with them can prove they are supposed to be here and are eligible to work.

    You might as well bar the police from asking for peoples drivers license on the grounds that it’s “discrimination”.

    It’s hard to believe that even the courts, which are relentlessly pro-illegal, will support Perez on this one. It’s just too goofy.

    Subotai (9d5c08)

  8. I want to see that Perez screwed to a chair in front of Congress, eight hours a day for two weeks, next term.

    JEM (a8a5ab)

  9. I work a lot of temp jobs and I have to show my SS card and fill out an I-9 every time.

    Patricia (358f54)

  10. If you’re white, Patricia, that’s no problem. But if you have more melanin or a Spanish-sounding name, then yeah, that’s bad.

    Christoph (8ec277)

  11. Republicans see illegal immigrants as criminals. Democrats see illegal immigrants as potential voters.

    This explains every move either side makes.

    Pious Agnostic (b2c3ab)

  12. Whiskey

    How soon will we have to carry papers for being American While Caucasian?

    Vivian Louise (c7cad6)

  13. Cops can’t ask for it; employees can’t ask for it. So, what is the reason for even having it anymore?

    This, brought to you by those that want to put RFID chips in all drivers licenses.

    Icy Texan (7a1ea1)

  14. Wrong – Republicans see illegal immigrants as breaking the law. That’s why we call them illegal immigrants. So why indeed do you not consider them criminals, Pious?

    The answer should be interesting.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  15. The Obama administration is trying to criminalize asking for too much documentation – which is actually necessary to spot immigration fraud. But the Obama administration is actually attempting to subsidize immigration fraud. That’s not rhetoric. That’s the real purpose of this suit.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  16. if you look at the form I-9 you are not required to prove citizenship, but rather that you can legally work in the country
    go here and you can see what an applicant must submit

    if you submit a passport that proves both your identity and employment authorization. If you present a drivers license and a SS card the former proves your identity the latter your employment authorization

    presenting a green card alone serves the same purpose as presenting a US passport.
    technically the school district should not ask for the green card if the applicant presents a drivers license and SS card

    PeterK (f11657)

  17. PeterK, since social security cards are so easy to forge, it is not unreasonable for an employer to ask for proof of legal residency or other ICE issued work authorization for non-citizens.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  18. Doesn’t everybody have to fill out an I-9 before they can start work? I thought that was the law.

    Ag80 (2f74a7)

  19. You’ve gotta at the very least admire these fools for their consistency: EVERY time they have a chance to do the completely wrong thing on a particular issue, they rise to the top.

    Icy Texan (7a1ea1)

  20. Employment Eligibility Verification

    Purpose of Form :
    All U.S. employers must complete and retain a Form I-9 for each individual they hire for employment in the United States. This includes citizens and noncitizens. On the form, the employer must examine the employment eligibility and identity document(s) an employee presents to determine whether the document(s) reasonably appear to be genuine and relate to the individual and record the document information on the Form I-9. The list of acceptable documents can be found on the last page of the form.

    PeterK – If you are in this country illegally, wouldn’t that mean your green card has likely expired? The I-( asks the employer to note and update the form for the expiration of the authenticating documents enderlying the employment eligibility.

    daleyrocks (940075)

  21. #14 Dmac

    I suspect you misunderstood me.

    When I wrote criminals I assumed they had this status because they were breaking the law.

    How is my construction different from yours?

    Pious Agnostic (b2c3ab)

  22. The I-9 form’s Anti-Discrimination Notice:
    “It is illegal to discriminate against any individual (other than an alien not authorized to work in the United States) [emphasis mine] in hiring, discharging, or recruiting or referring for a fee because of that individual’s national origin or citizenship status. It is illegal to discriminate against work-authorized individuals. Employers CANNOT [emphasis theirs] specify which document(s) they will accept from an employee. The refusal to hire an individual because the documents presented have a future expiration date may also constitute illegal discrimination.”

    — Now, does saying that employers “CANNOT specify which documents they will accept” mean that they are not allowed to ask for ADDITIONAL documentation, beyond what is required of the form? How else can they legally refuse to hire “an alien not authorized to work in the United States”? The form includes check-boxes for the employee to “attest, under penalty of perjury” their citizenship/authorization-to-work status. If the employee presents forged documents and perjurs him/herself, then the onus seems to fall on the employer to prove that they did not know of the employee’s falsehoods. Seems to me that asking for the green card is a sensible way to practice CYA.

    The company I worked for hired such an individual. He lied about his work authorization on the form, and presented very well-made forged documents. When the deception was later discovered he was — legally — fired. He is now out in California trying to get on with another franchise of our company.

    Icy Texan (7a1ea1)

  23. Pious – my apologies, I misunderstood the context in your earlier post.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  24. you can’t blame me: I voted for Sarah. 8)

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  25. The company I worked for hired such an individual. He lied about his work authorization on the form, and presented very well-made forged documents. When the deception was later discovered he was — legally — fired.

    Forging ID like that is a felony. Did you report him to the police?

    Subotai (9d5c08)

  26. The Bar took away Clinton’s authorization to practice law because of his perjury, even though he withstood impeachment, correct??

    What are the chances of the Bar taking away Holder’s license to practice law for disregarding the law and Constitution he has sworn to uphold?

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  27. I have an idea: let’s give our jobs to illegals and convicted felons and then we will can sit around on welfare!

    Patricia (358f54)

  28. Not my call, Subotai. I’m middle management. I’m the one that receives the employment verification calls from our locations in CA.

    Icy Texan (7a1ea1)

  29. Up is down, down is up, dark is light, light is dark, and good is bad, bad is good in Liberalville, aka Assbackwards Land.

    But the people there at least have their heart in the right place [pffft].

    Mark (3e3a7c)

  30. My question–When I was young, it used to be illegal to photo copy drivers licenses and such…

    But now everyone makes a copy for “file”…

    What is the law (ha. ha.) on this issue now (copying D.L. / Passports / etc.)?

    BfC (e660ad)

  31. I had a horrible thought about this, what if this is the first/second move in an attempt to do a blanket amnesty in time to provide millions of grateful and democratic voters for that November I can see from my house?

    Seriously, I’m not trying to go all Conspiracy Theory on this, but well… Considering the hanky pankery that went on to pass the health care bill and the increasingly gloomy polling outlook for the Dems, is this how Obama pays back his party for voting for 2000 pages of unicorn/leprechaun lovechild vomit? Also considering that Big Sis already floated just doing amnesty without the consent of the American people.

    Vivian Louise (c7cad6)

  32. I don’t know what’s so conspiracy about that, Vivian. Getting these illegals to the ballot box is obviously the name of the game. You’re just worried about the timing they have in mind.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  33. From the article,
    the Justice Department said it wanted “full remedial relief” for 247 noncitizens who applied for jobs with the community college district between August 2008 and January of this year, plus a civil penalty of $1,100 for each of them.
    “We are extremely disappointed by the Justice Department’s action. We had no intent to discriminate against any foreign national, and we feel we have been singled out for the maximum penalty under the law,”

    So clearly the Gubmint is only shaking them down for the money. Remember, evry time a pol makes a “mistake” on some form they merely re-file to correct the “oversight.” The old double standard at work.

    Gazzer (c21e1c)

  34. I put nothing past this administration when it comes to using Trojan Horses in order to circumvent laws they can’t repeal via legislation or the courts.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  35. This truly turns my stomache.

    What really infuriates me, is that I am immediately called a racist because I want people to simply follow the law.

    If the law is not a good one, then change it to one that is. Period. As long as a law is on the books it should be enforced.
    If you do not want to enforce it, then you need to take it off the books.

    I do not get to choose which laws I follow and which I do not. No one is supposed to be above the law in the U.S.
    Our current President is allowing non-citizens to be above the law. Our previous President felt the same way
    but he did a better job of at least PRETENDING to care about the immigration laws.

    We need to stop using immigration as a means of fishing for votes. Democrats see them as a large bloc of votes
    to support their policies. Republicans see them as a large bloc of possible votes as well, so they pander
    to them.

    I wish we could get someone in office who was willing to duplicate the efforts of Dwight Eisenhower re: immigration,
    and damn the consequences.

    D. Hughes (e73926)

  36. PeterK beat me to it, but here it is again: the .pdf of ICE Form I-9.

    The instructions make it pretty clear:

    All employees (citizens and noncitizens) hired after November 6, 1986, and working in the United States must complete Form I-9.

    If this is not done, it is a violation of federal law to hire the person. And Form I-9 continues, in Section 2:

    Employers must complete Section 2 by examining evidence of identity and employment authorization within three business days of the date employment begins.

    The employer must then fill out this at the end of Section 2:

    CERTIFICATION: I attest, under penalty of perjury, that I have examined the document(s) presented by the above named employee, that the above-listed document(s) appear to be genuine and to relate to the employee named, that the employee began employment on (month/day/year) __________________ and that to the best of my knowledge the employee is authorized to work in the United States.

    The boldfaced text is boldfaced in the I-9 original, which is meant to call attention to the signing company official the seriousness of his act.

    Now, Form I-9 accepts, in combination, a valid driver’s license and a Social Security card; in a technical sense, someone who has produced those has produced sufficient documentation. However, Social Security cards are notoriously easy to forge. What the Department of Justice is doing is to enable forgers, by stating that the most easily forged document is sufficient, and that additional proof of eligibility to work cannot be requested.

    The Dana who has had hiring responsibilities (8a8a86)

  37. i’ve got news for you Vivian: in California, the illegals are already voting.

    look at the cities of Bell and Maywood for examples.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  38. Were I a conspiracy theorist, I’d wonder if this wasn’t a ploy to get Republicans to sign on to the idea of a government issued, as-forgery-proof-as-possible, biometrically-encoded national identity card.

    The conspiracy theorist Dana (8a8a86)

  39. Perez, another freakin Mexican/American with the American missing. They have turned me totally against any and all Mexicans and I rate and will treat them on the same level as radical Islamic terrorists.

    Scrapiron (4e0dda)

  40. Has anybody had time to cruise around the internets to see what our friends on the other side of the “aisle” are saying about this issue–if anything. I mean, there must be at least some progressives and MFM types who have children and grandchildren they love and whom they would like to see live and grow up in a self sustaining, law abiding, civil society with a future– where English is spoken and businesses have a fighting chance to thrive, and where politically motivated rules are not made up in the spot. Aren’t there? Aren’t there?

    Hellooo—is this mike on?

    elissa (5953ce)

  41. “Obama DoJ Now Telling Employers They Can’t Check Employees’ Immigration Status”

    The article said they can’t check before they hire. Don’t employers have to collect documentation of new hires? This headline seems misleading.

    imdw (3ac9fb)

  42. Note where Maricopa County is located.

    This is part of Obama’s war on Arizona
    (The only “good war” for the left).

    Teflon Dad (51022d)

  43. I ask for a green card and an SS card.

    The SS card is key for resolving where the SS benefits payments go, and the green card isn’t set in stone, but it is the easiest photo ID that defines a legal right to work here.

    That said, if they bring other ID that meets the I-9 criteria, that is accepted.

    It does indeed put us into a double bind… in addition to a double bind which existed previously.

    I’m pretty sure any lawyer defending an employer accused of illegal hiring practices just went home in a state of arousal

    SteveG (6879f6)

  44. Easy cure, hire no Mexicans citizen or not.

    Scrapiron (4e0dda)

  45. This is what you get when you elect a Democrat, folks.

    It’s time to run these cretins out of town on a rail, the process beginning this upcoming November and not stopping until as many of them as possible have been picked off.

    Blacque Jacques Shellacque (609d83)

  46. Scrapiron, if the person is a citizen, then he’s not a Mexican–he’s an American.

    That said, this whole DOJ business is almost laughable, or it would be if it wasn’t so serious. Mr. Perez should be summoned before a Congressional panel and asked to explain the legal basis of this action. That won’t happen under the current Congressional leadership; we can only hope that it will if the Republicans do succeed in taking control of at least the House.

    OldBull (8b0130)

  47. The article said they can’t check before they hire. Don’t employers have to collect documentation of new hires? This headline seems misleading.
    Comment by imdw — 9/4/2010 @ 5:00 pm

    Oh, look! Our old friend took advantage of amnesty to come back here and step on a rake again. Bravo! Bravo!
    Encore! Encore!


    Icy Texan (c067d2)

  48. .. time to run these cretins out of town on a rail, the process beginning this upcoming November and not stopping….

    Agree wholeheartedly. But it’s a big job that will take a very long time to accomplish. Unfortunately, many of the federal and state bureaucracies of appointees and career civil “servants” are also packed with them and embedded into the day-to-day operation of the system. For instance, while the rest of the world laughs at us, the people of Illinois continue to suffer because our accidental governor, Quinn, “the reformer” did not fumigate Blago’s appointees who continue to make mischief. This is one reason Republican Brady stands a very good chance of taking the governorship. But, even when he wins it will take years to clean out the nest of vipers already inside, (and they will be fighting fang and nail while attempting sabotage all the way).

    And just brace for the NYT and Kos headlines when the current US Justice department political drek starts being purged by the next WH “purely for political reasons”.

    elissa (421fb1)

  49. I’m voting for Brady, but until Madigan Sr. is run out of office, I don’t have high hopes for any significant change. The Dem legislature must be held accountable, and so far the voters of those individual districts are either too ignorant or are just OK with how the state’s been run into the ground. I’ll believe that real change is afoot when/if Melissa Bean is defeated. And let’s not allow the GOP off the hook for financial mismanagement – they’ve been a big part of The Combine for decades at this point.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  50. BTW, seen the IL Senatorial polls lately? A Mob – connected scumbag is actually tied with his GOP challenger. The voters really are pathetic.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  51. I blogged about that, and more, here:

    (In)Justice Department Sues Sheriff Joe Arpaio

    If Obozo wants to show all 50 (not 57) states why they ALL need to secede from Washington, DC, this oughta do it. Unbelieveable!

    1389AD (4329bb)

  52. Liar. There is no such checkbox. This is just another spammer tactic; and a rather clever one, since there are many blogs that do have such a checkbox!

    [It was indeed spam and is now removed]

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

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