Letters and Op-Eds

Welcome to the OFIR Letters and Op-Eds section.  Here you can read Letters to the Editor and Op-Eds that have been published in various newspapers and news sources.

Lyneil Vandermolen, Tualatin
The Oregonian

Gov. Kate Brown's refusal to allow the Oregon National Guard to help stop the strangely spontaneous column of dubious refugees marching through Mexico to forcibly storm our border is an example of her contempt for the rule of law. Her apparent indifference to the likelihood of terrorists or smugglers embedded in the crowd is intolerable. Her dismissal of American welfare is even evident in her official phone greeting, which addresses stakeholders (illegal aliens) first and ordinary citizens second. 

Brown may consider American citizens to be ordinary, or even irrelevant, but we pay for the troops meant to defend us against aggressive frontal assaults on our border. Brown's refusal to use them seems like an attempt to increase the number of  stakeholders needed to supplant us ordinary American voters.


Jerry Ritter
Register-Guard, Eugene

State Sen. Lee Beyer’s Senate Committee on Business and Transportation just flipped a big middle finger to Oregon voters. It approved an amendment to House Bill 4111 that at least partially nullifies the voters’ overwhelming 2014 decision (Measure 88) to deny driver licenses or cards to anyone who cannot prove legal presence in the United States.

There were no exceptions granted by the voters. Under the amended bill, a person “is not required to provide proof of legal presence in the United States” if certain conditions are met and if the person provides certain documents to the Department of Motor Vehicles. But the department is prohibited from verifying the documents.

Supporters claim the bill applies only to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients. However, neither the term “DACA” nor its translation appears in the language. They further assert this action “has nothing to do” with Measure 88. It has everything to do with Measure 88.

A bogus “emergency” clause was included to prevent another voter rebellion.

The legislators — mostly Democrats — promoting this amendment clearly couldn’t care less about voter mandates. They’ve seen that voters will return them to office election after election no matter what they do. That’s the real travesty here.

Jerry Ritter, Springfield


Jim Ludwick
News-Register, McMinnville OR

On May 1, 2013, Gov. John Kitzhaber signed into law a bill to grant illegal aliens official Oregon driver cards. As soon as the ink was dry, Oregonians for Immigration Reform, with which I have long been affiliated, filed paperwork for a referendum to overturn the bill.

No one gave us a chance. Every newspaper in Oregon, including the News-Register, came out in opposition. And we were outspent 10 to 1 in the campaign.

In the end, though, Oregon voters overturned the law 66 percent to 34 percent. Thirty-five of Oregon’s 36 counties voted against driver cards for illegal aliens.  Seventy-three percent of Marion, Polk and Yamhill voters said no to Oregon driver cards for illegal aliens.

Recently, when federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement asked Multnomah County Sheriff Mike Reese to provide the release date for multiple-time illegal alien deportee Sergio Martinez, who had been charged with 18 separate crimes, he refused. Upon release, Martinez went on to rape one woman and sexually assault another.

Martinez has since been convicted and sentenced to 35 years in prison. The incarceration cost, an estimated $1 million, will be borne by Oregon taxpayers.

These brutal assaults on two women and the cost of the illegal alien’s subsequent incarceration are directly related to Oregon’s sanctuary policy, which protects illegal alien criminals from being turned over to ICE for deportation. To remedy that, Stop Oregon Sanctuaries is collecting signatures on a repeal measure, Initiative Petition 22.

Oregon voters can help protect citizen safety by signing IP 22.

A single signature sheet can be downloaded at stoporegonsanctuaries.org. Simply print out the sheet, sign it and mail it.

Jim Ludwick


Lyneil Vandermolen
Blue Mountain EAGLE

The U.S. has granted six amnesties since the big Simpson/Mazzoli amnesty of 1986. In each case, the federal government has refused to agree to future immigration enforcement without granting amnesty first. Then it ignores enforcement. By now, most citizens know that granting amnesties so that we can earn the right to enforce our laws later is like negotiating with burglars to get some of their stuff back — someday, maybe.

HB 4760 would change that. It ends the visa lottery and chain migration. It would build a wall and begin an e-verify program to turn off the job magnet. The bill would also reduce legal immigration to allow our entry-level citizens to get a first shot at jobs. It even legalizes 675,000 DACA recipients and their immediate families as a humanitarian gesture.

True to form, Oregon Congressman Greg Walden is ignoring it. His seven-term history is full of lip service for immigration reform as long as it doesn’t stand a chance of passing. But unless our government finally serves citizens first, it will only enshrine the precedent of mob rule. So, will Congressman Walden co-sponsor HB 4760?

Steve Weaser

Mayor Wheeler's shrill speech/rant in Washington, D.C., makes painfully obvious his disconnect from reality. He accuses the U.S. Department of Justice of doing precisely what the U.S. Constitution requires them and him, per his oath of office, to do. Mayor Wheeler said it is "unconstitutional" and "dangerous" (for whom?) for the federal government to enforce immigration laws in the face of half-baked "sanctuary" laws passed locally. Sanctuary laws reasonably result in an increased risk of crime committed by illegals.

From their first day in office, Mayor Wheeler and Portland city commissioners have violated their oaths of office and the city's charter by allowing homeless camping on Portland Parks property along with all the crime and environmental destruction they cause. They're standing on a "state of emergency," voted on but never proven to exist. Our angry-at-the-feds mayor and city council need to publish the exact criteria used to justify that vote so we, the people, can decide for ourselves if they get a pass on violating two constitutions and a city charter.

Al Phillips
The Bulletin

Oregon should obey the law

I read recently that the Department of Justice has included Oregon on the list of jurisdictions that the DOJ wants documentation regarding arrested illegal immigrants. A request by the way, that they have every right to demand. The fact that Oregon’s elected officials have allowed Oregon to be included in such a request is absolutely outrageous! And that Oregon, essentially, must now prove that it is not violating federal law is an embarrassment, or should be, to every man, woman and child in this state. What part of automatically enforcing federal law does Oregon’s elected officials not understand?

And, if in fact it becomes evident that Oregon has not followed federal law on this issue (which is what I’d bet will occur), by what stroke of genius gives them that right? And politicians in charge should be held personally accountable; which is exactly what would happen if you or I violate federal law.

This is one more of myriad indications in my view of decades of hollow and unrealistic and, in this case, potentially, if not actually, illegal positions being piled upon this state by liberal-minded people controlling our state’s government. If there ever was a serious time to “drain the swamp” here, borrowing a line from Trump, that time is now. Frankly, it’s long past that time.

Sharon McVay

A message from Gov. Kate Brown 2016: "I believe in a thriving Oregon; one that is resilient and sustains the well-being of current and future generations; where all Oregonians have opportunities to reach our full potential: We must continue our efforts to expand health insurance coverage until every Oregonian is covered."

Illegal aliens seem to prosper, not so much Oregonians. Oregon college students must provide their own health insurance. Illegal aliens do not. HB 3391 provides taxpayer-funded abortions to women who are living in the state illegally. The bill also provides funding for other health care services free of charge who are living in the state illegally.

Make this Democrat governor and her Democrat legislature work to come up with a genuine plan for taxpaying Oregonians for a change. $25 million of a new insurance premium tax will be borne by the K-12 public schools. Where do the cuts fall? Demand an answer.

Small businesses cannot keep up with the taxes and expenses imposed on them to cover the mistakes and poorly managed monies made by our governor. Her special interests love the profit put into their pockets for special favors upon demand. The governor passed new taxes benefiting campaign donors while taking $78 million in healthcare tax dollars from individuals, college students, small businesses, non-profits and public school (HB 2391; parts of which have been referred to Oregon voters as Measure 101).

Vote no on this measure. Do not keep funding this government's way of life at the cost of legal Oregon residents and their families. Read your Voters Pamphlet!

Tom Shuford
News Topic - North Carolina

In 2012 President Obama deferred immigration enforcement for illegal aliens claiming arrival before age 16. Obama's unconstitutional "executive action" is known as DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. By 2014 Central America had gotten the message. Unaccompanied minors began surging through Mexico over the U.S. border.

DACA expires in March. Democrats want a permanent amnesty for 800,000 DACA recipients. Trump wants a wall and tightened rules for legal immigration. President Trump (tweet, Dec. 29): "The Democrats have been told, and fully understand, that there can be no DACA without the desperately needed WALL at the Southern Border and an END to the horrible Chain Migration & ridiculous Lottery System of immigration etc."  Let's look at Trump's demands:
THE WALL: Israel built impenetrable walls in recent years. One result is this headline in an Israeli newspaper on Jan. 1: "Steps to prevent illegal migrants from entering Israel 100% effective in 2017." Zero illegal entries are remarkable for a wealthy country in a poor region. Israelis took other protective actions, but walls are crucial.
CHAIN MIGRATION:  "For over 50 years, naturalized citizens have been able to petition for the immigration of parents, adult siblings, and adult sons and daughters, all of whom can bring their own spouses and children. When those spouses and children naturalize, they may, in turn, sponsor further relatives, and so on."  (Mark Krikorian, Center for Immigration Studies).
An immigrant should be able to sponsor only a spouse and minor children. Chain migration of extended families drives most legal immigration. Chain migration has shifted source countries for immigration from Europe to Latin America and Asia.
DIVERSITY VISA LOTTERY: The U.S. selects by lottery 50,000 people annually from under-represented, often terror-prone countries. Then they bring relatives by chain migration.
Three terrorists in November and December incidents, Sayfullo Saipov and Akayed Ullah in New York City and Ahmed Amin El-Mofty in Pennsylvania, were "gifts" to America from the Congresses who voted for chain migration in 1965 and for the Diversity Lottery in 1990.
Unlike the tax reform bill, the Senate will need 60 votes for immigration legislation. At least nine Democrat senators will have to vote to slow huge annual inflows of future Democrat voters from chain migration and from the diversity lottery. The prospect of a DACA amnesty, a passionate cause for Democrats, might tempt a few Democrat senators to deal with Trump.
Timothy Reiser
Statesman Journal

One of the most basic duties of our government is to protect its citizens.

Cities and states that provide sanctuary to illegal immigrants violate this duty, and politicians who support it for political gain are dangerous, naive, and grossly negligent.

Perhaps enlightened leaders like Gov. Kate Brown can explain how sanctuary zones promote safety and justice to the families of victims like Kate Steinle, the young woman  (allegedly) killedby an undocumented immigrant deported five times, yet protected by the city of San Francisco.

According to a recent report by the United States Sentencing Commission, “non-citizens” account for about 22 percent of all federal murder convictions and 72 percent of federal drug convictions, an appalling statistic, given that undocumented immigrants account for about 7 percent of the U.S. population.

As a society, we should have empathy for foreigners wanting a better life for themselves and their families and should provide a path to citizenship for those who can lawfully contribute.

But the reality is that we can’t accept everyone who applies for citizenship. And we shouldn’t. U.S. citizenship is not a human right; it is a privilege extended by our government.

And it is our responsibility to determine whom we welcome as fellow citizens.

Pete Ready
Albany Democrat-Herald

Equal Time 101: In a Nov. 17 letter to Gov. Kate Brown, Oregon Health Authority (OHA) Director Pat Allen documented the myriad ways in which the agency tasked with managing Oregon's $9.3 billion Medicaid program has wasted or misallocated taxpayer dollars.

Oregon overpaid $74 million in federal funds to “dual eligible” enrollees who were old enough to qualify for Medicare and poor enough to qualify for Medicaid, Mr. Allen wrote. The OHA also incorrectly enrolled an undisclosed number of unauthorized immigrants in Medicaid, rather than in the state’s less expansive emergency health care program, costing taxpayers $25.7 million in “payment errors and over-claimed federal funds.”

The Oregon Secretary of State’s audit, released Nov. 29, found that 41 percent of Medicaid enrollees in a backlog of 115,200 recipients were in fact ineligible for the benefits they received.

Would you invest your money in such a business? Does this inspire you with confidence? Does it make you want to be taxed more? What they have done with federal money they will do with yours if you give them a 101 “blank check." That is what Measure 101 will do to you. For starters, a “yes” on Measure 101 will assess (tax) “certain hospitals” 0.7 percent, add 1.5 percent assessment on the Public Employees Benefit Board, managed care organizations, and insurers. You also will pay for local government and school health cost increases due to the insurance assessments.

Measure 101 will tax you to mismanage their Oregon sanctuary state utopian health care dreams.

Vote no.