Monday, June 05, 2006

Please Attend - The Negative Impact of Illegal Immigration

Ronald Mortensen

Candidate Meeting

The Negative Impact of Illegal Immigration

Location: Bountiful City Library Date: Thursday, June 8, 2006 Time: 7:00 pm

Ronald Mortensen, Ph.D., a retired Foreign Service Officer and Republican Candidate for the House of Representatives in District 20, invites you to a discussion on the negative impacts of illegal immigration.

While immigration is federal responsibility, many of the negative impacts of illegal immigration fall on Utah and its citizens. During this discussion, we will look at the epidemic of illegal immigrant driven identity theft that appears to be targeting our children and other issues that you may wish to cover.

By the conclusion of the evening, we will have identified the things that our elected state representatives can do to mitigate the negative impacts of illegal immigration.


Please take the time to click on the hyperlinks in the last paragraph for additional and important information on illegal immigrant driven identity theft.

According to a Brookings Institute study, Utah is an emergency gateway for illegal immigration. The Salt Lake Tribune reports that Utah is a destination of choice for illegal immigrants due to our driver's privilege card, in-state college tuition for the children of illegal immigrants and the generally welcoming attitude of Utahns.

Following the march of tens of thousands for illegal immigrant rights, KSL-TV reported that there are an estimated 90,000 illegal immigrants in Utah with other media outlets setting the number at 100,000.

Those who support illegal immigrants argue that these are good people who take jobs that Utahns won't do. They contribute to the economy, pay taxes, enhance the state's diversity and deserve to be given a path to citizenship.

Those opposing illegal immigration cite national security concerns that come from a porous, uncontrolled border and a disregard for the rule-of-law. They point out that illegal immigrants suppress wages, take jobs that many of our young people and other citizens would do, drive up the crime rate and increase the cost of health care, social programs and public education.

Proponents of Utah's in-state tuition law argue that it is unfair to make the children of illegal immigrants pay out-of-state tuition at our colleges and universities. After all, they were brought here by the parents and shouldn't be made to pay for their parents illegal acts. The Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce strongly supports in-state tuition and argues that it will prepare these young people to be leaders in our business community.

Opponents note that even if a students who are illegally in the United States graduate from college, they will still not be able to legally work in the United States. They also argue that Utah's in-state tuition program opens the state up to potential litigation from American citizens and legal immigrants who have to pay out-of-state tuition. Finally, they point out that Governor Mitt Romney vetoed an in-state tuition bill that was passed in Massachusetts arguing that it was not appropriate to reward illegal acts.

It has been widely reported that wherever there are large numbers of illegal immigrants, identity theft becomes a major problem since they require Social Security numbers and other documents in order to obtain employment. In fact, a rather limited, 2005 investigation by the Attorney General's office revealed that 1,800 Utah children under the age of 12 had their Social Security numbers stolen. When applied to the entire population, tens of thousands of Utah's children may well be the victims of identity theft.

Last year, bills were introduced in the legislature that would have repealed Utah's in-state tuition provision, ended the issuance of driving privilege cards and required employers to verify employment eligibility and Social Security numbers. None were considered by the full body of the Senate or the House.