A bill that's been introduced in the Texas state legislature would finally, at long last, put an end to illegal aliens taking American jobs. If any of you Texans think you can get away with hiring an "unauthorized alien" on the cheap, this bill would make that punishable by up to two years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Is that clear enough? No hiring of illegals! Although there is one small loophole in the bill: "Unauthorized alien" domestic workers, like maids, caretakers, lawnboys, and so on, would still be totally legal to hire.
This is one of several immigration bills that's been proposed in Texas. It cracks down on employers who hire illegal aliens with draconian fines and prison sentences, unless we're talking about "the help." What's the logic behind this loophole? Just to make sure that rich people don't go to jail? That's always part of it, but as Texas Rep. Aaron Pena tells CNN, it's pure pragmatism:
It is a tough immigration bill with a soft side that protects those who hire unauthorized immigrants "for the purpose of obtaining labor or other work to be performed exclusively or primarily at a single-family residence."
Texas state Rep. Aaron Pena, a Democrat, said the exception is a wise one.
"With things as they are today, her bill will see a large segment of the Texas population in prison" if it passes without the exception, he said.
"When it comes to household employees or yard workers, it is extremely common for Texans to hire people who are likely undocumented workers," Pena said. "It is so common, it is overlooked."
This sounds a hell of a lot like the logic behind amnesty, but applied to the employer side. Such a cop-out, Texas.
[via The Lookout, image of the Texas Capitol via AP]