Thursday, June 16, 2011

HB116 Fact Sheet

Keri Witte compiled and posted the fact sheet below at the Repeal HB116 Facebook Group.  It contains a lot of good information for delegates to consider before Saturday's vote on the repeal resolution for HB116. Delegates are being inundated with materials by e-mail, etc., to get them to support HB116 and to vote against the repeal.  Keri Witte's fact sheet makes a strong case for voting for the repeal resolution.  I urge all delegates to consider the information below and to vote for repeal. 

Someone sure wants to make sure HB116 isn't seriously challenged.

Who could that be? 

The money-powers who want cheap labor, I am willing to bet.  

The fact sheet:



HB116 Q/A / Fact Sheet

Want the facts about what's in HB116?   Why should it be repealed and fixed?  Here are the details  - complete with line numbers from the bill for your reference.  Read on - you may be surprised by what's in the bill.  (For more info visit

Here you can access a copy of the resolution entitled "Uphold the Constitution of the United States and Republican Immigration Platforms: Repeal HB116 and Replace":,_submitted_by_Keri_Witte.pdf

Here you can access the text of HB116:

HB116 Fact Sheet
  • Violates U.S. Constitution (Articles 1:8:4, 1:8:18, 1:9:1, 6:2). A state cannot make its own immigration & naturalization policy. What are the consequences of 50 different state policies? (See bill’s Constitutional note)
  • Favors hiring of illegals over legal Utah citizens. There are over 103,000 unemployed Utahns & 107,000 families on food stamps. What are the consequences of unemployment rising?
  • Redefines the status of illegal aliens as legal in Utah. (line 1555)
  • Requires Utah to seek non-existent waiver to violate federal law & U.S. Constitution. (line 651)
  • Rewards illegal aliens who violate our national borders & come to Utah for sanctuary. (line 746)
  • Negatively Impacts Utah’s Economy: Forces Utah taxpayers to cover financial burden of educating, medicating and incarcerating illegal aliens before start date. (lines 672, 746)
  • Redistributes wealth through subsidizing illegal alien health care. (line 758)
  • No Background check required for the family permit. (line 796)
  • Identity thieves will not be prosecuted because of loopholes. (line 754)
  • Utah becomes Safe-Haven for international criminals, gangs and terrorists because of no background check outside USA. (line 783)
  • Puts employers at serious risk of committing felonies under federal law by hiring permit holders.
  • Does nothing to prevent ID theft & restore credit worthiness of victims. (lines 1428, 1437, 1451)
  • 2-yr permit has unlimited renewals with one-time fee, resulting in de facto amnesty. (lines 817, 832)

HB 116 Q&A

What does HB116 do?
HB116 implements a state-run work permit program only for those who are here illegally, ignoring federal guest-worker visas that already exist for skilled, unskilled and migrant workers.  The program requires a fine of $2,500 (HB116 line 823) for each person who has violated our sovereign borders and come here illegally, and offers a reduced fine of $1,000 (line 820) for each person who has overstayed a visa (regardless of any other violations of law they have committed, such as identity theft and document fraud).

Does it grant legal status to illegal immigrants?
YES.   The bill specifically redefines an illegal immigrant’s status as legal within Utah (line 1555 – definition of illegal alien “does not include an individual who holds a valid permit”).

Is it amnesty?
YES.   Amnesty is giving someone the very thing they broke the law to obtain – the privilege of living and working in the US. That is precisely what HB116 does in Utah. The bill also turns a blind-eye to identity theft and document fraud committed prior to permit application, ignoring equal treatment under the law. This bill has been rightly dubbed "Utah's Amnesty Bill", and states around the nation are understandably shocked that conservative Utah would pass liberal amnesty legislation.

Is HB116 constitutional? 
NO.   Both naturalization and migration are specifically enumerated in the Constitution as being the responsibility of Congress. These are not constitutional rights reserved to the individual states. The Utah Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel (the legislature's lawyers) included a review note on HB116 on 3/4/11 advising the legislature that:

"The Constitution of the United States grants authority to the federal government to regulate foreign commerce and to adopt a uniform rule of naturalization. The United States Supreme Court has also found inherent federal authority to regulate immigration on the basis of federal sovereignty and the power to engage in foreign affairs, this is sometimes referred to as the 'plenary power,' which in more recent years has been made subject to certain constitutional limits."

-- and more specifically:

 "In the absence of an effective waiver recognized as valid by the courts, under current law, there is a high probability that a court would find that portions of this bill unconstitutional because they are preempted by federal law as applied through the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution of the United States."
 (Reference U.S. Constitution, Articles 1:8:4; 1:8:18; 1:9:1; 6:2)
 Additionally, the Chair of the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has asked the federal government to sue Utah over the constitutionality of this bill, which will cost taxpayers millions in legal expenses (“Smith to DOJ: Utah Immigration Law is Unconstitutional”,, April 18, 2011).

Does it violate the Platform?
ABSOLUTELY.   Utah's amnesty bill clearly violates the Utah state and national Republican Party Immigration Platform Planks; just a few of Platform principles violated include:
• We oppose illegal immigration and all forms of amnesty, or legal status, for illegal immigrants;
• Control of our borders is an urgent national security interest and our national sovereignty depends on those secure borders;
• We support efforts to enforce the law while welcoming immigrants who enter America through legal avenues;
• Taxpayers should not be covering state benefits for illegal aliens;
• Enforcement of the law against those who overstay their visas;
• Real consequences, including denial of federal funds, for self-described sanctuary cities, which stand in open defiance of federal and state statutes that prohibit sanctuary policies ;
• Opposition to government policies that encourage or reward illegal activity.

Does this bill violate federal law?
YES.  Because the work permit program is in violation of federal law, this bill requires the governor to seek a waiver from federal law (line 651). There is currently no mechanism for granting waivers from following the law.  Additionally, while HB116 redefines a person's legal status within the state, the federal government will not recognize this status, leaving both workers and employers participating in the Utah program subject to all the penalties of breaking federal immigration and employment law (including fines, arrest, and deportation for illegal aliens holding the Utah guest worker permit).

As long as there's no waiver, there's no problem, right?
WRONG.  This bill goes into effect on July 1, 2013, with or without a waiver (line 672). This results in a 2-year gap between the date by which illegal immigrants must arrive in Utah (May 10, 2011) and when the program starts. Utah taxpayers will pay for the education, medical expenses and public safety expenses of this influx of illegal immigrants for the next two years.  Senator Mike Lee said, “I don’t believe there is any possibility that the state is going to get any kind of a waiver. I know of no process in federal law that suggests that such a waiver could even be granted, nor do I know of any political inclination in Washington to let that happen.”  (Salt Lake Tribune, 3/22/11)

Does it make Utah a magnet for illegal immigration and a sanctuary state?
YES.  This bill makes Utah a magnet in 3 ways:
 1)     Any illegal immigrant who has ever lived or work in Utah before May 10, 2011, can apply for the work program (line 746). This bill was signed March 15, 2011, leaving our doors wide open for 2 months.
2)     Not only is this an enticement to enter the US illegally, it further entices illegal immigrants who have left Utah for other states to return to Utah when the program is implemented on July 1, 2013 (line 672).  Many will simply stay in Utah to await the implementation date.
3)     There is no cutoff date for participants to bring their immediate family members (spouse and both single adult and minor children age 21 and younger) illegally in to the U.S. and into Utah (line 797).  Additionally, there is no limit to the number of work permits than can be issued, the number of times they can be renewed, nor any limit to the job sectors eligible for the work program - this will hurt the 100,000 Utah citizens who are currently searching for work in an already depressed economy.

Is HB116 a solution?
NO.   HB116 was never meant to be a solution. Legislators publicly call HB116 “a resolution on steroids” and an attempt to “get the government’s attention”. It is a message bill -- but is an unconstitutional amnesty bill the message Utah wants to send? Because it makes Utah a magnet for illegal immigration and a sanctuary state, this bill actually makes our immigration problems worse.  History has shown that granting amnesty to illegal immigrants does not solve the problem.  If anything, it makes the problem worse by creating expectations of similar actions in the future.

Is the bill full of holes?
YES.   In a process reminiscent of Obamacare, the final version of this bill was rushed through the legislature in approximately 4 hours late on a Friday night.  When asked, only 6 Representatives said they had read the bill. There are many flawed provisions that need to be fixed. For example:
  • An illegal immigrant participating in the program must have health insurance, OR just say they won't incur any health debt (line 758) - how nice would it be to tell your insurance company you don't need their services because you'll never get sick or never get in a car accident? And when those things happen to uninsured illegal immigrants, we end up paying for it through taxes and our own skyrocketing health insurance premiums.
  • Another strange provision is that the illegal immigrant must have a Driver Privilege Card, OR they just have to say they won't drive (line 762). 

Does the bill improve safety and security in Utah?
NO.   The fingerprint background check required for the primary permit applicant (line 772) will only identify crimes for which the person has already been convicted – this will neither catch nor prevent identity theft currently being perpetrated. The background check does not screen for crimes committed outside of the USA, leaving the permit process open to violent criminals and even terrorist (line 783). There is no background check required for anyone covered by the family permit (line 796), which includes a spouse, and both single adult and minor children ages 21 and younger (line 520).

Why should I defend the Platform?
As Republican delegates, we have the right and responsibility to defend our Party Platform, which contains the principles and values that define our Party. The Platform was written and ratified by us, and it defines and unifies us as a Party. Our platform is like a contract with our voters – it tells them ‘if you elect Republicans, these will be our guiding principles.’ If we do not abide by it and defend it, we will lose our support, identity and purpose, and our Party will become irrelevant.

Why should I support the resolution to repeal HB116?
When badly flawed bills are passed, delegates and voters have the right and responsibility to call on the legislature to correct these bills. The resolution “Uphold the Constitution of the United States and Republican Immigration Platforms: Repeal HB116 and Replace" simply asks the legislature to put this bill back on the table and replace it with a bill that is viable and constitutional.

Please join me in defending the Republican Party Platform, the rule of law and the Constitution of the United States. Please vote to adopt the resolution entitled “Uphold the Constitution of the United States and Republican Immigration Platforms: Repeal HB116 and Replace".

No comments:

Post a Comment