So, there was a markup on the new federal E-Verify mandate bill in Congress this week. Most national employer groups have now decided to throw in the towel and lobby for a single national E-Verify mandate with substitution of the electronic system for the paper I-9 system and preemption of state/local mandates.
In an interesting turn of events, however, tea partiers and their allies have warned Republicans not to push the bill, though.
According to the report from the American Independent ("state politics in context"), their arguments seem so far "right" that they are "left":
The letter, which identifies its signatories as “pro-freedom, limited government, and Constitutional government organizations,” lists five reasons for opposing E-Verify:
We are alarmed that E-Verify poses a threat to both the Constitution and every law-abiding citizen of this country because it:
1. Creates a de facto national I.D. System – even for citizens;
2. Violates individual civil liberties such as the right to work and free speech;
3. Mandates a costly job-killing regulatory burden that cripples small business
4. Requires employers to become enforcement agents of the federal government;
5. Encourages identify theft of law-abiding citizens
While the letter reflects fears of an overreaching federal government typical of modern conservative ideology, many of the points raised in the letter are echoed by liberal Democrats and immigrant rights activists who have consistently opposed mandatory implementation of E-Verify.
For more on how "liberals" see the E-Verify issue, see the Immigration Policy Institute's assessment of the impact of mandatory E-Verify on Virginia' s economy.