economy

Gov. Brown should tell feds: no more Syrian refugees to Oregon

Will some of the Syrian refugees the Obama administration is hustling through a truncated vetting process make their way to Oregon?

In early April, the Associated Press’ Khetam Malkawi reported, “the first Syrian family to be resettled in the U.S. under a speeded-up ‘surge operation’ for refugees left Jordan” for Kansas City, Mo. “While the resettlement process usually takes 18 to 24 months,” Malkawi wrote, “the surge operation will reduce the time to three months.” Its purpose? To help President Barack Obama meet his goal of admitting 10,000 Syrian refugees this fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30.

Between the start of the fiscal year last October and April 1, the State Department reports, 17 Syrian refugees had been resettled in Oregon. Obama’s surge could increase that number suddenly and dramatically — to the detriment, as we’ll see, of many Oregonians. First, however, let’s look at what 10,000 Syrian refugees could mean for the nation as a whole.

In regard to their country of origin, FBI counter-terrorist official Michael Steinbach told Congress last year, “We don’t have systems in place on the ground to collect information to vet ... The dataset, the police, the intel services that normally you would (consult) to seek information” about refugees don’t exist. Consequently, even under the more comprehensive pre-surge vetting, terrorists from Syria could and did slip through the cracks. One prominent example: Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab, a Syrian admitted to the United States as a refugee in 2012, returned to his home country and fought for the terrorist group Ansar al-Islam in late 2013 and early 2014. Afterward, eluding State Department screening yet again, he returned to the United States. Under Obama’s dramatically-shortened vetting process, even more Al-Jayabs likely will be able to enter our country.

Granted, not all Syrian refugees would be terrorists. But to the communities in which they settle and to Americans as a whole, they would constitute a significant fiscal burden. “More than 90 percent of recent Mideast refugees draw food stamps and about 70 percent receive free health care and cash welfare,” noted Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala. Indeed, the Heritage Foundation’s Robert Rector estimates that the 10,000 Syrian refugees the administration aims to resettle here, over the course of their lifetimes, likely would cost U.S. taxpayers $6.5 billion.

And now, to Oregon.

Late last year, Gov. Kate Brown said our state “will ... open the doors of opportunity” to Syrian refugees. If she makes good on that, however, she may shut those same doors on some of our most vulnerable fellow citizens.

According to the Oregon Employment Department, some 200,000 Oregon residents are unemployed or underemployed. Indeed, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated recently, more than 16 percent of Oregonians live in poverty. The city of Portland, OPB reported late last year, has a shortage of some 24,000 housing units “affordable to the lowest-income renters” (those available for $750 a month or less); the Washington County housing market, said the county’s Housing Services Department, has recently suffered “a shortage of affordable housing for extremely low-income and low-income households.” And Oregon’s $7.4 billion K-12 school fund for the 2015-17 biennium, a state legislative committee determined last year, was almost $1.8 billion short of the amount needed “to reach the state’s educational goals.” Clearly, some of Oregon’s youngest and poorest would be harmed by an influx of refugees who would compete against them for already-insufficient jobs, shelter and education dollars.

What then, should Brown do?

Federal law 8 U.S.C. 1522 states that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which is charged with resettling refugees, “shall consult” with state governments “concerning ... the intended distribution of refugees among the states and localities before their placement.” Among the criteria for such placement: “the availability of (an area’s) employment opportunities, affordable housing, and public and private resources (including educational, health care, and mental health services.)” The law further directs HHS, “to the maximum extent possible,” to “take into account recommendations of the state(s).”

Citing this law, Brown should contact HHS and explain how an influx of Syrian refugees would harm some of her state’s most vulnerable residents. Coming from a Democrat friendly to the president’s overall agenda, her argument could sway the department’s chief refugee-resettlement officials.

Though the governor’s compassion toward refugees is laudable, it is to her fellow Oregonians — those she was elected to serve — that she owes her foremost responsibility. Immediately, she should contact HHS and say: For the sake of our own struggling people, send no more Syrian refugees to Oregon.

Cynthia Kendoll of Salem and Richard F. LaMountain of Cedar Mill are president and vice president of Oregonians for Immigration Reform Read more about Gov. Brown should tell feds: no more Syrian refugees to Oregon

OFIR President attends American Principles Liberty Summit in Fresno, CA

Cynthia Kendoll, OFIR President was invited to attend the American Principles Liberty Summit Conference in Fresno, CA Saturday, May 21, 2016.  the conference was fast paced with over 40 speakers and as many vendors booths to visit.

Interesting, knowledgeable speakers covered topics ranging from 2nd and 5th amendment rights, radical Islam and terrorism, legal and illegal immigration, the upcoming general elections and much, much more.


  Read more about OFIR President attends American Principles Liberty Summit in Fresno, CA

Origin of immigrants changes for nation, but not Oregon

The face of the nation's newest immigrants is vastly different than a decade ago. While in 2004 most of the states immigrants originated from Mexico, data from the Pew Charitable Trust shows that in 2014 at least 37 states had most of their immigrants originate from a country other than Mexico.

But most immigrants to Oregon still come from Mexico. The same can be said for much of the Southwest and the West.

According to the data, an estimated 17,486 immigrants came to Oregon in 2014. Most came from Mexico and Vietnam. Also in 2014, California took in 363,852 immigrants and Washington took in 60,287 immigrants, mostly from Mexico.

East of the Mississippi, most new immigrants are arriving from China and India, rather than Mexico. However, there are still twice as many Mexican immigrants living in the United States as Chinese and Indian immigrants.

The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that 428,000 Chinese and Indian immigrants came to the U.S. in 2014, compared with 240,000 Mexican immigrants.

Pew officials said some of the changes, including the peak in Mexican immigration, can be attributed to the economy. Droves of Mexican laborers came to the United States around 2005 to work in construction, the release said. But the recession and strict immigration laws, coupled with better job prospects in Mexico, "reduced the flood to a trickle."

Now, educated Chinese and Indian immigrants are finding jobs in the U.S. Many immigrate with L-1 visas, which allow international companies to move their foreign workers into the United States.

gfriedman2@statesmanjournal.com, (503) 399-6653, on Twitter @gordonrfriedman or Facebook.com/gordonrfriedman

  Read more about Origin of immigrants changes for nation, but not Oregon

Attend a Town Hall!

Alert date: 
August 3, 2015
Alert body: 

Congress is in recess now for the month of August.  Two members of Oregon's Congressional delegation, Senator Merkley and Rep. DeFazio, have announced town halls on their websites, and one, Rep. Walden, invites registration for telephone town halls.  The schedule announced below is current as of August 3.  You might check the links below for any updates.

Town halls offer the best opportunity for voters to address their legislators publicly and in person.  They are your best chance to express your opinions directly to the legislator.

SENATOR JEFF MERKLEY

Sen. Merkley says he “will update constituents on his work in Washington, DC and answer their questions and invite their suggestions about how to tackle the challenges facing Oregon and America.”  http://www.merkley.senate.gov/events/town-halls

August 10, 2015 @ 2:30 PM

Clackamas County Town Hall

Wilsonville Public Library, 8200 SW Wilsonville Road, Wilsonville, OR 97070
Get Directions

 

August 12, 2015 @ 4:00 PM

Wallowa County Town Hall

Joseph Charter School Cafeteria, 400 E Williams Ave, Joseph, OR 97846
Get Directions

 

August 12, 2015 @ 12:30 PM

Union County Town Hall

Pleasant Grove Grange Hall, 67218 Hunter Road, Summerville, OR 97876
Get Directions

 

August 13, 2015 @ 9:30 AM

Grant County Town Hall

Long Creek Community Center, 210 West 2nd Street, Long Creek, OR 97856
Get Directions

 

REPRESENTATIVE PETER DEFAZIO

“Each year, Rep DeFazio holds town hall meetings across Oregon's 4th District to hear from his constituents and update Oregonians about what's been going on in Washington.”  His schedule is posted at http://defazio.house.gov/2015-town-hall-meeting-schedule

 

Wednesday, August 5

Brookings, 9-10 am, Chetco Activity Center, 550 Chetco Ln

Canyonville, 1-2 pm, Azalea Room, Seven Feathers Hotel, 146 Chief Miwaleta Ln

Roseburg, 5-6 pm, City Hall, 900 SE Douglas Ave.

 

Monday, August 24

Sweet Home, 10-11 am; Senior Community Center, 870 18th Ave.

Albany, 12-1 pm; City Hall,  333 Broadalbin St SW

Corvallis, 5:30-6:30, Benton Public Library, 645 NW Monroe Ave.

 

Tuesday, August 25

Eugene Seniors Town Hall Meeting, 10-11 am, Campbell Senior Center, 155 High St., Eugene

Springfield, 4:30-5 pm, Willamette Center for Sports & Recreation, 250 S. 32d St.

Eugene, 6-7 pm, NW Community Credit Union, 545 E. 8th Ave.

 

REPRESENTATIVE GREG WALDEN

Rep. Walden’s website invites constituents to sign up for his telephone town halls, after which they will be notified when a telephone town hall is scheduled.  To add your name to the list, please visit https://walden.house.gov/telephone-town-hall-signup-form.

USA to Issue More Green Cards Than Populations of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina Combined

The overwhelming majority of immigration to the United States is the result of our visa policies. Each year, millions of visas are issued...

The lion’s share of these visas are for lesser-skilled and lower-paid workers and their dependents... added directly to the same labor pool occupied by current unemployed jobseekers.

...most will be able to draw a wide range of taxpayer-funded benefits, and corporations will be allowed to directly substitute these workers for Americans. Improved border security would have no effect on the continued arrival of these foreign workers, refugees, and permanent immigrants—because they are all invited here by the federal government.

greencardgraph

The most significant of all immigration documents issued by the U.S. is, by far, the “green card.”...

Under current federal policy, the U.S. issues green cards to approximately 1 million new Legal Permanent Residents (LPRs) every single year....

These ongoing visa issuances are the result of federal law, and their number can be adjusted at any time.

...there is virtually no national discussion or media coverage over how many visas we issue, to whom we issue them and on what basis, or how the issuance of these visas to individuals living in foreign countries impacts the interests of people already living in this country.

If Congress does not pass legislation to reduce the number of green cards issued each year, the U.S. will legally add 10 million or more new permanent immigrants over the next 10 years—a bloc of new permanent residents larger than populations of Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina combined.

This has substantial economic implications.

The post-World War II boom decades of the 1950s and 1960s averaged together less than 3 million green cards per decade—or about 285,000 annually. Due to lower immigration rates, the total foreign-born population in the United States dropped from about 10.8 million in 1945 to 9.7 million in 1960 and 9.6 million in 1970.  

These lower mid-century immigration levels were the product of a federal policy change: after the last period of large-scale immigration that had begun in roughly 1880, immigration rates were lowered to reduce admissions. The foreign-born share of the U.S. population fell for six consecutive decades, from 1910 through 1960.

Legislation enacted in 1965, among other factors, substantially increased low-skilled immigration. Since 1970, the foreign-born population in the United States has increased more than four-fold—to a record 42.1 million today...

Georgetown and Hebrew University economics professor Eric Gould has observed that “the last four decades have witnessed a dramatic change in the wage and employment structure in the United States… The overall evidence suggests that the manufacturing and immigration trends have hollowed-out the overall demand for middle-skilled workers in all sectors, while increasing the supply of workers in lower skilled jobs. Both phenomena are producing downward pressure on the relative wages of workers at the low end of the income distribution.”

During the low-immigration period from 1948-1973, real median compensation for U.S. workers increased more than 90 percent. By contrast, real average hourly wages were lower in 2014 than they were in 1973...

President Coolidge articulated how a slowing of immigration would benefit both U.S.-born and immigrant-workers: “We want to keep wages and living conditions good for everyone who is now here or who may come here. As a nation, our first duty must be to those who are already our inhabitants, whether native or immigrants. To them we owe an especial and a weighty obligation.”

It is worth observing that the 10 million grants of new permanent residency under current law is not an estimate of total immigration. In fact, the increased distribution of legal immigrant visas tend to correlate with increased flows of immigration illegally: the former helps provide networks and pull factors for the latter...

Yet the immigration “reform” considered by Congress most recently—the 2013 Senate “Gang of Eight” comprehensive immigration bill—would have tripled the number of green cards issued over the next 10 years...

Polling from Gallup and Fox shows that Americans want lawmakers to reduce, not increase, immigration rates...

Please take the time to read the FULL article - it's worth the time!
  Read more about USA to Issue More Green Cards Than Populations of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina Combined

House Approves Obamatrade’s TPA, Bill Must Go to Senate Next

Obamatrade is alive.

One week after the House of Representatives overwhelmingly rejected Obamatrade by voting against a key provision of it — Trade Adjustment Assistance — GOP establishment lawmakers resuscitated Trade Promotion Authority and rammed it through Thursday afternoon. The final tally was 218-208.

The House action is unusual. As Breitbart News reported: “To engage in the complicated procedural chicanery needed to revive the once-dead Obamatrade, bringing its Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) portion back to life,

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) 58% needed to gut a previous bill that has passed the House and Senate and then insert Obamatrade into it. It’s actually a very similar process to how Obamacare passed the House”...

Because the Senate passed TAA and TPA together, the individual House version will now have to go back to the Senate for approval, where it may face a filibuster. It’s unclear how many senators would support TPA without TAA, a measure to aid workers who lose their jobs because of trade policy.

The Senate isn’t expected to take up TPA until next week, but Majority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) 52% has expressed confidence it can pass.  Obamatrade is making for unusual partnerships in Washington. Barack Obama is working with McConnell and House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) 35% to pass a measure his own party largely rejects.

Last week he traveled to Capitol Hill to lobby for his trade measures, but shortly before the House vote on TAA, Minority Leader. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) 9% announced she opposes it. More than 300 representatives ended up voting down TAA, setting the stage for Thursday’s moves to bring TPA back to life. Read more about House Approves Obamatrade’s TPA, Bill Must Go to Senate Next

House blocks trade deal from moving forward but may try again

After votes earlier today, the House has at least for now set aside the threat of giving Presidents the authority to use trade deals to guarantee other countries the ability to send their workers to take jobs in the U.S.

When the Senate passed the "fast-track" Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill, it set things up so that it could go to the President to be signed only if the House passed BOTH the TPA and a companion Senate trade assistance bill.

The House today was able to pass only one of those must-pass bills, narrowly approving the TPA bill (219-211). But the trade assistance bill garnered only 126 votes, with 302 voting against it. That effectively killed TPA for the present moment.

Republican House Leaders, however, could decide to bring the trade assistance bill back to the floor early next week in hopes of persuading around 90 Members (mostly Democrats) to switch their vote to pass what Pres. Obama and House Majority Leader Boehner consider to be a top priority.

"We are not done with this," House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said.

Moments before the first vote, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who had been silent on the issue, urged Democrats to vote against the two bills, hoping to keep TPA from reaching the President's desk. Pelosi pleaded with Republican House Leadership to focus on legislation that puts American workers first instead of free trade; something she failed to do during the amnesty debates of the past two years.

Pelosi led 144 Democrats in joining 158 Republicans to defeat the trade assistance bill. That was all that was needed today to keep TPA from going to Pres. Obama, who had made a rare personal visit to the Capitol to meet with Democrats in an emotional appeal for them to help him pass TPA as an important part of his legacy.

  Read more about House blocks trade deal from moving forward but may try again

House blocks trade deal from moving forward but may try again

After votes earlier today, the House has at least for now set aside the threat of giving Presidents the authority to use trade deals to guarantee other countries the ability to send their workers to take jobs in the U.S.

When the Senate passed the "fast-track" Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill, it set things up so that it could go to the President to be signed only if the House passed BOTH the TPA and a companion Senate trade assistance bill.

The House today was able to pass only one of those must-pass bills, narrowly approving the TPA bill (219-211). But the trade assistance bill garnered only 126 votes, with 302 voting against it. That effectively killed TPA for the present moment.

Republican House Leaders, however, could decide to bring the trade assistance bill back to the floor early next week in hopes of persuading around 90 Members (mostly Democrats) to switch their vote to pass what Pres. Obama and House Majority Leader Boehner consider to be a top priority.

"We are not done with this," House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said.

Moments before the first vote, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who had been silent on the issue, urged Democrats to vote against the two bills, hoping to keep TPA from reaching the President's desk. Pelosi pleaded with Republican House Leadership to focus on legislation that puts American workers first instead of free trade; something she failed to do during the amnesty debates of the past two years.

Pelosi led 144 Democrats in joining 158 Republicans to defeat the trade assistance bill. That was all that was needed today to keep TPA from going to Pres. Obama, who had made a rare personal visit to the Capitol to meet with Democrats in an emotional appeal for them to help him pass TPA as an important part of his legacy.

  Read more about House blocks trade deal from moving forward but may try again

Senator Wyden has announced upcoming town hall meetings

Alert date: 
May 26, 2015
Alert body: 

Senator Wyden has announced upcoming town hall meetings to be held soon in Polk, Yamhill, and Tillamook Counties. Please attend if you can, and speak to him about immigration issues.

Below the schedule, there is background information that may help you formulate your comments and questions.

Polk County town hall »
May 29 2015 10:00AM
Nesmith Readiness Center
12830 Westview Drive
Dallas, OR 

Yamhill County town hall »
May 29 2015 1:00PM
McMinnville High School
615 NE 15th St
McMinnville, OR

Tillamook County town hall »
May 30 2015 10:30AM
Port of Tillamook Bay Officers Mess Hall
6825 Officer's Row
Tillamook, OR 
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YOU CAN PRINT OUT A REPORT CARD FOR SEN. WYDEN AND GIVE IT TO HIM:
https://www.numbersusa.com/content/print/my/congress/667/printreportcard/congress/

Senator Wyden is graded F- by NumbersUSA based on his voting record on immigration issues in 2015. This year alone he voted 7 times in favor of measures supporting amnesty for illegal aliens: 6 times for funding President Obama’s amnesties and once to confirm a Presidential appointee for U.S. Attorney General who is openly in favor of amnesty.

Also, he has been a prominent advocate for Trade Promotion Authority that would fast-track international trade agreements without adequate examination by Congress or citizens, and including allowing unknown numbers of foreign workers to take jobs from citizens. See this report on Sen. Wyden’s role and the status of the fast-track bill in Congress now: http://www.eagleforum.org/publications/alerts/2015-archives/fast-track-passes-senate.html

Sen. Wyden has been in Congress for over 30 years. His overall career grade by NumbersUSA is F for his votes on immigration issues.

Tell Sen. Wyden  politely but firmly - that U.S. immigration policies should put the interests of U.S. citizens first, not the interests of corporations that profit from cheap labor, and not the interests of illegal aliens and other foreign nationals.

Tell him that our country’s future is in grave danger from overpopulation which is primarily due to excessive immigration now and in recent decades. Furthermore, much of current immigration comes uninspected, allowing easy entry for persons who wish to harm us.

Your actions worked!

Alert date: 
May 12, 2015
Alert body: 

Sometimes it seems that nothing we do works in stopping elected officials from moving in the wrong direction.  But, this time it worked.  You and your calls and emails stopped it.  Read all about it - then pat yourself on the back!

If you quit - you lose for certain.  If you stay and fight, you may lose...but, you just might win!
 

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