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Firing illegal immigrants no joyful task
Rocky Mountain News ^ | May 24, 2005 | Mike Littwin

Posted on 05/27/2005 2:40:58 PM PDT by Conservative Firster

Lee Driscoll is cracking down on illegal immigrants in his restaurants.

And it's breaking his heart.

He's not just going the extra mile. He's taking the full trip.

And it's tearing him up inside.

He's going to fire as many as 51 of his employees - for crimes that include trying to make a living for their families.

And, Driscoll says, it's not unlike firing members of his own family.

"I think it will make me very emotional," he is saying on the day the story breaks. "I think it will make me cry."

Lee Driscoll is CEO of Wynkoop Holdings Inc., which runs the restaurants partly owned by John Hickenlooper. The restaurants are held in trust and Hickenlooper - while he's mayor - is supposed to have nothing to do with them.

But the restaurants, it turns out, have everything to do with Hickenlooper. If you don't believe me, just turn on your radio.

The mayor is facing the first real challenge of his administration. He got past the Christmas crisis with a funny Scrooge line, but jokes don't work here.

Raul Garcia-Gomez was a dishwasher at the Cherry Cricket - one of Hickenlooper's restaurants - when he allegedly killed Detective Donnie Young.

Like many dishwashers, he was an illegal immigrant.

Like many illegal immigrants, he had phony papers.

Like many who have phony papers, he didn't have to worry. Counterfeit documents play an essential role in the tragicomedy that is our immigration policy.

The way the system works now - or doesn't work - is that the Social Security Administration checks numbers from employers and advises, on an annual basis, when the numbers don't match. With the letter comes a warning that you can't fire someone simply because he's got a bad number.

Even with multiple warnings on an employee, covering any number of years, there is no guideline as to what action an employer should take.

There's a wink. There's a nod.

But everything has changed at Wynkoop Holdings. Donnie Young is dead. Garcia-Gomez is on the run, possibly to Mexico.

And, here in Denver, some want to make the case that illegal immigration killed Donnie Young - and not a coward with a gun. Still, Driscoll felt he had to act, even though he swears he and the mayor never discussed the issue.

Driscoll put two employees on the case, working a full week each, matching employees with bad numbers.

They found 107 people, 51 of whom still work at the restaurants, including 34 who have received multiple notices from Social Security.

The 51 employees have 30 days to prove they're legal or they're gone - to some restaurant not owned by Hickenlooper.

And so this won't come up again, Wynkoop will now use the new software to screen Social Security numbers at the time of hire. No match means no job. There's no law forcing Wynkoop to do any of this. There's a political reality that begins and ends with restaurants owned by mayors.

Driscoll is explaining the process and then says, "Dealing with these immigration issues is the first time in my life I'm ashamed to be an American."

He stops. You have the sense he's saying more than he's supposed to say.

Ask him why he's ashamed and he says, "Because I think the country is living a lie. There are 11 million of these individuals in the country, and they affect every one of our daily lives. Yet we don't have the legislation or the leaders that recognize this and come up with a fair immigration policy . . . "

"Restaurants are like families. These people work extremely hard. The vast majority work two (jobs), 80 hours a week. I feel badly for these people. They look to people like me for protection."

Ask Hickenlooper about the policy and he says people want it both ways - for him to effect change at his restaurants and, at the same time, for the restaurants to remain in a blind trust.

He insists he never knowingly hired anyone who was here illegally when he was Hickenlooper the restaurateur, and, since this was a phone call, I don't know if he winked.

But what is clearly true is that Denver is not a sanctuary city - not if that means it's somehow different from other cities. If you listen to talk radio, or Tom Tancredo, you'd think Denver was the Big Rock Candy Mountain for illegal immigrants, who race here for all the goodies city officials are handing out. But the only service I can see that isn't federally mandated is that, as in most cities, cops don't turn you over to immigration if you have an accent and you run a stop sign.

Hickenlooper says anyone with "a heart and a brain" opposes illegal immigration. "The system we have now," he says, "is so broken it's ridiculous. It reminds me of Prohibition - large numbers of people randomly breaking the law. That's not good for society."

Of course, cities don't make immigration law, not that you'd know that from much of the discussion. Hickenlooper does recommend the McCain-Kennedy bill before Congress, but that's for another column.

But if this is a policy issue from Hickenlooper's office at City Hall, it's something different from Lee Driscoll's office back at the restaurant.

Once Driscoll was an assistant DA in New York. He worked with cops there, working the hard cases, and says his heart goes out to Donnie Young's family.

But there's also this: "I learned," he says, "that overwhelmingly immigrants were victims of crimes - not the perpetrators. That's what really drives my personal view of this matter.

"And now I've had years of experience with restaurants to see how hard these people work and how they're treated by society."

The crackdown is, of course, the official Wynkoop Holdings statement on illegal immigration. But official doesn't always mean a statement made without regret.


TOPICS: Front Page News; Mexico; US: Colorado
KEYWORDS: aliens; illegals; immigrantlist; immigration; wetbacks
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1 posted on 05/27/2005 2:40:58 PM PDT by Conservative Firster
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To: Conservative Firster

Well, that an he broke the law by hiring them.

Dondes esta tu I-9 carte?


2 posted on 05/27/2005 2:41:48 PM PDT by BurbankKarl
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To: Conservative Firster
for crimes that include trying to make a living for their families

No, that is NOT what the crime is. The crime is breaching the sovereign borders of the USA.

Working without legal documents is also a crime as is hiring someone who is illegal.

These leftists won't be happy until we get swamped and there are no borders.

3 posted on 05/27/2005 2:43:28 PM PDT by freedumb2003 (First you get the sugar, then you get the power, then you get the women (HJ Simpson))
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To: Conservative Firster
"I think it will make me very emotional," he is saying on the day the story breaks. "I think it will make me cry."

Senator Voinovich is that you?

4 posted on 05/27/2005 2:43:44 PM PDT by CzarNicky (The problem with bad ideas is that they seemed like good ideas at the time.)
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To: Conservative Firster
Hickenlooper should be in jail.
5 posted on 05/27/2005 2:43:59 PM PDT by ScreamingFist (Peace through Ignorance)
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To: Conservative Firster

He should not be firing them. He should be in the grey bar hotel. The guy he's forced to sell out to pay the fines (above and beyond doing hard time) ought to be the one firing them. In an ideal world.


6 posted on 05/27/2005 2:45:00 PM PDT by GOP_1900AD (Stomping on "PC," destroying the Left, and smoking out faux "conservatives" - Take Back The GOP!)
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To: Conservative Firster
I don't suppose greed had anything to do with it? Like having 51 employees you don't have to pay as much?


7 posted on 05/27/2005 2:46:42 PM PDT by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: Conservative Firster

Waah.

There, I felt his pain.


8 posted on 05/27/2005 2:47:05 PM PDT by USAFJeeper
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To: Conservative Firster

Nah, I think firing illegals would be fun. Actually, if I could make a living going from business to business firing people for their bosses....


9 posted on 05/27/2005 2:48:23 PM PDT by Free and Armed
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To: CzarNicky

LOL. I heard a caller on the Laura Ingraham show, he said he used to be a fireman in OH. He said that Voidovitch was mayor he came in and gave a speech to them and told them that he didnt have the money to give them a raise or something like that.....

THEN HE STARTED CRYING!!


10 posted on 05/27/2005 2:52:02 PM PDT by Stellar Dendrite (Saddam: $25k to suicide bombers = BAD --- Bush: 50 mil to terrorist scum = "GOOD")
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To: Conservative Firster
"I think it will make me very emotional," he is saying on the day the story breaks. "I think it will make me cry."

The real reason is that he is getting heat from someone regarding employing illegals. IMHO of course.

11 posted on 05/27/2005 2:54:44 PM PDT by afnamvet (31st Fighter Wing Tuy Hoa AB RVN 68-69 "Return with Honor")
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To: Conservative Firster
"Raul Garcia-Gomez was a dishwasher at the Cherry Cricket - one of Hickenlooper's restaurants - when he allegedly killed Detective Donnie Young.
Like many dishwashers, he was an illegal immigrant."


He was just murdering the police officers Americans wouldn't murder.
12 posted on 05/27/2005 2:54:57 PM PDT by NJ_gent (Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.)
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To: Conservative Firster
"I think it will make me very emotional," he is saying on the day the story breaks. "I think it will make me cry."

What a pathetic story. The man is free to open restaurants south of the border and he can have all the cheap labor he wants. And it'll be legal too...

13 posted on 05/27/2005 2:57:26 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
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To: 1_Inch_Group; 2sheep; 2Trievers; 3AngelaD; 4.1O dana super trac pak; 4Freedom; 4ourprogeny; ...

ping


14 posted on 05/27/2005 2:58:28 PM PDT by gubamyster
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To: NJ_gent
"Raul Garcia-Gomez was a dishwasher at the Cherry Cricket - one of Hickenlooper's restaurants - when he allegedly killed Detective Donnie Young. Like many dishwashers, he was an illegal immigrant."

He was just murdering the police officers even Black Americans wouldn't murder.

Thank you Mr. Fox. Ole Vincente was a major point release in the versioning of liberal stupidity.

15 posted on 05/27/2005 3:06:56 PM PDT by evolved_rage
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To: Conservative Firster

Stop! Stop! You're breaking my heart. < /sarcasm>


16 posted on 05/27/2005 3:09:06 PM PDT by SAMWolf (Another beautiful theory, killed by a nasty, ugly, little fact.)
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
The man is free to open restaurants south of the border and he can have all the cheap labor he wants. And it'll be legal too...

Well, ummm....,no. As an American, he can't do that.

Many North Americans choose Mexico for relocation or retirement, and some come with the idea that they will find employment when they arrive. For the most part, this is not feasible. As in many third world countries, there is a problem with unemployment in Mexico, and the government does not look kindly upon foreigners entering Mexico with the idea of working and taking jobs away from Mexican nationals.

17 posted on 05/27/2005 3:09:43 PM PDT by Polybius
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To: Polybius

The hypocrisy coming from Vinnie Fox and Mexico is mind-boggling but not suprising. Open borders with that country means one thing... the traffic flows north.


18 posted on 05/27/2005 3:14:20 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
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To: Conservative Firster
"There's a political reality that begins and ends with restaurants owned by mayors."

No, there's the reality of finding out he hired an illegal who killed a Detective and then fled back to wherever.

Maybe it would make more sense to the writer if the illegal had killed a presstitute instead of a LEO.

Then again, it probably wouldn't ("Oh Ramon, that was bad of you! Psst, can you come over and do my lawn tomorrow?"
19 posted on 05/27/2005 3:20:24 PM PDT by Yehuda (America: Land of the free, THANKS TO THE BRAVE! [" Choke on it, pinkos!"])
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To: Conservative Firster
He's NOT going to fire as many as 51 of his employees - for crimes that include trying to make a living for their families.
20 posted on 05/27/2005 3:21:18 PM PDT by DumpsterDiver
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To: Conservative Firster

Do not hire illegals. Ever.

Problem solved.


21 posted on 05/27/2005 3:28:04 PM PDT by tkathy (Tyranny breeds terrorism. Freedom breeds peace.)
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To: Cicero

Great point. The guy knowingly employed 51 (current)illegal immigrants, probably at or below minimum wage with no health benefits, and as likely as not, paid under the table. Then when he gets called on it, tries to shift blame to the Government's immigration policy. It's always fascinating to watch somebody who only looks out for #1 try to appear altruistic.


22 posted on 05/27/2005 3:29:58 PM PDT by clearlight
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To: Conservative Firster
We were bought out by a frog company, as a manager I had to show proof of citizenship to keep my job, my family has been in America since 1628, the union rats weren't required to do so, pissed me off.
23 posted on 05/27/2005 3:48:16 PM PDT by Little Bill (A 37%'r, a Red Spot on a Blue State)
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To: Conservative Firster

He shoulda done just like where I work. We use a temporary employment service. The employees actually work for the temporary employment service which "checks" very closely their papers. (wink, wink. nod, nod). we do hire permanently some of the best ones. The ones that have better papers or are actually here legally.


24 posted on 05/27/2005 3:53:34 PM PDT by dynachrome ("Where am I? Where am I going? Why am I in a handbasket?")
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To: Conservative Firster

25 posted on 05/27/2005 3:54:04 PM PDT by Rakkasan1 (The MRS wanted to go to an expensive place to eat so I took her to the gas station.)
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To: BurbankKarl
Driscoll is explaining the process and then says, "Dealing with these immigration issues is the first time in my life I'm ashamed to be an American."

Well Driscoll, we’re all ashamed you are an American to. Now get back in the kitchen and start washing the dishes.

26 posted on 05/27/2005 3:55:27 PM PDT by usurper (Correct spelling is overrated)
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To: gubamyster

Protect our borders and coastlines from all foreign invaders!

Be Ever Vigilant!

Minutemen Patriots ~ Bump!


27 posted on 05/27/2005 3:57:17 PM PDT by blackie (Be Well~Be Armed~Be Safe~Molon Labe!)
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To: Conservative Firster
He's going to fire as many as 51 of his employees - for crimes that include trying to make a living for their families.

And entering the USA illegally. And document forgery. And making false claims. And probably driving without a license, income tax evasion ("yes, I have 4000 dependents"), yada yada yada. Pardon me if I don't break into tears.

28 posted on 05/27/2005 4:01:11 PM PDT by John Jorsett (scam never sleeps)
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To: BurbankKarl
Dondes esta tu I-9 carte?

You can buy a decent set of fake papers for about $300.00.

You can fill out the I-9's and have every thing legal on your end but if the papers are fake the I-9 doesn't do one bit of good.

29 posted on 05/27/2005 4:08:14 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (I am not a romantic, I don't hero worship and no, as a matter of fact, I don't have a heart.)
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To: Conservative Firster
Driscoll is explaining the process and then says, "Dealing with these immigration issues is the first time in my life I'm ashamed to be an American."

So, move your *ss to Mexico. Boo-Hoo...

30 posted on 05/27/2005 4:16:05 PM PDT by kcvl
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To: Conservative Firster

Some illegals are hard workers. Some are lazier than a hound dog in the Texas summer shade. So when management finds an illegal that's hard working and speaks english fluently, they send the paperwork to the home office. The illegal becomes a manager and all seems well. Until the home office sends word to the local district manager that "the numbers in Juanita's SSI have a problem, it appears the numbers have not been issued yet, or Juan's SSI is the same as Seymour Shwartz who died in 1982."

This problem is more than a few million illegals breaking immigration laws, they're also using stolen identities.

But Bush and the CINOs don't want you to know this serious problem. So don't tell them I told you the truth. Oh, and I feel sooooooo bad for illegals and their employers while the Mexican mafia takes over construction and landscaping in the southland. I'm crying a friggin river.


31 posted on 05/27/2005 4:41:06 PM PDT by sully777 (If anyone asks, I'm a monger-monger.)
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To: Conservative Firster

One small business, 51 illegal criminals hired by the mayor, and he is deeply saddened.

Lee Driscoll should be tried, convicted and sentenced for knowingly breaking our nations laws, but he won't be. As I type, he is likely making calls to get them hired elsewhere, needs the votes don'tcha know.


32 posted on 05/27/2005 4:41:28 PM PDT by Ursus arctos horribilis ("It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!" Emiliano Zapata 1879-1919)
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To: Conservative Firster
overwhelmingly immigrants were victims of crimes

If this is true it is because they are victims of other illegal immigrants. California jails hold 47,000 of them.

33 posted on 05/27/2005 4:46:02 PM PDT by layman (Card Carrying Infidel)
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To: Conservative Firster

Too f'n bad...


34 posted on 05/27/2005 4:49:47 PM PDT by Czar (StillFedUptotheTeeth@Washington)
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To: Conservative Firster

BUMP


35 posted on 05/27/2005 4:49:49 PM PDT by AnimalLover ( ((Are there special rules and regulations for the big guys?)))
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To: Conservative Firster
Driscoll is explaining the process and then says, "Dealing with these immigration issues is the first time in my life I'm ashamed to be an American."

Ask him (Lee Driscoll( why he's ashamed and he says, "Because I think the country is living a lie. There are 11 million of these individuals in the country, and they affect every one of our daily lives. Yet we don't have the legislation or the leaders that recognize this and come up with a fair immigration policy . . . "

If you are so ashamed then you should go live in mexico where you won't have to live the shame of being an honest American citizen. POS

36 posted on 05/27/2005 6:22:56 PM PDT by raybbr
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To: Cicero
RE: "I don't suppose greed had anything to do with it? Like having 51 employees you don't have to pay as much?"

So that's why he's crying!

37 posted on 05/27/2005 6:37:55 PM PDT by WilliamofCarmichael (Goo- goo- google, good bye!)
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To: Ursus arctos horribilis
"As I type, he is likely making calls to get them hired elsewhere, needs the votes don'tcha know."

Oh no, no way. Those illegals can't vote, ya gotta have a picture ID like a drivers license to vo...

Uhhh, never mind.

38 posted on 05/27/2005 7:17:22 PM PDT by TLI (. ITINERIS IMPENDEO VALHALLA,. .Minuteman Project, Day -1 to Day 8)
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To: Conservative Firster

[[He's going to fire as many as 51 of his employee]]

Spare me of thy tears. He knew that it was illegal when he hired them. He knew he was violating the law when he hired them. Now that it is summer, he can hire an American that is out of school for the summer.


39 posted on 05/28/2005 5:11:33 AM PDT by JarheadFromFlorida
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To: Little Bill
When I was young and militant back in the 1970's, I once gave a state employment agency a social security number with a transposed digit or two. This was simply to register so I could apply for a job. It took them less than two minutes using 1970's technology to come back to me that the number I gave was not mine and belonged to someone working in a town about 100 miles away. There was nothing I could do but to pull out my SS card, read them the correct number and let them see it matched to me.

Only then was I allowed to use their job database. Do you really think it would be that difficult to instantly ferret out fake social security numbers and name mismatches using 30 years newer technology if there was the will to do it?

Oh, by the way, one of my family lines was here when Columbus "discovered" America; another since 1634.

40 posted on 05/28/2005 5:47:07 AM PDT by Vigilanteman (crime would drop like a sprung trapdoor if we brought back good old-fashioned hangings)
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To: Conservative Firster

Oh, For Crying Out Loud!


41 posted on 05/28/2005 5:48:08 AM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin (Save The Earth. It's The Only Planet With Chocolate.)
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To: Conservative Firster
Too bad the law and law enforcement doesn't make it even less "joyful" for Lee Driscoll to hire illegal immigrants.
42 posted on 05/28/2005 5:52:54 AM PDT by FreePaul
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To: Conservative Firster
Too bad the law and law enforcement doesn't make it even less "joyful" for Lee Driscoll to hire illegal immigrants.
43 posted on 05/28/2005 5:54:06 AM PDT by FreePaul
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To: Conservative Firster

If his heart is so broken over having to fire illegal aliens, then one thing that could help mend it is to replace them with Mexicans who are in this country legally (either by birth or by immigrating through the proper channels). And pay them a decent living wage while he's at it.

That is, IF he's so concerned about "the plight of the little brown people" and not his bank account.


44 posted on 05/28/2005 11:55:54 AM PDT by cartman90210 ("Sorry kids, those people from the future will do the same job for 25 cents!")
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To: cartman90210

First Directive – You must verify that a person is a legal resident of the United States and has the necessary paperwork allowing them to work in the country before you pay them to cut your grass.

Second Directive – The State may not ask a person about their legal residency status before they give them welfare, medical treatment, driver’s license or anything else.

Let me get this straight. I cannot pay an illegal alien to cut my grass. The State takes money from me at the point of a gun to pay illegal aliens.
I guess being the State has its privileges, doesn’t it?

I cannot pay for an illegal alien, so if they need money, they go to the State who can pay them, but only if they do not work.

Do you still wonder why we have a budget deficit?

Our government has a mental illness called liberalism.


45 posted on 05/28/2005 8:32:15 PM PDT by Rodentking (http://www.airpower.blogspot.com/)
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To: Cicero
Like having 51 employees you don't have to pay as much?

Yeah, but... since having fake papers and a low salary means you don't have to pay any taxes, they're not really doing so badly. I wonder about their tax situation. Is the social security going to a non-existent person? Directly into the federal (ever hungry) coffers? Being paid at all? These kinds of stories always leave out more than they tell. But I'm quite sure every one of these illegals is defrauding the tax system in one way or another.

46 posted on 05/28/2005 8:40:33 PM PDT by johnb838 (Liberalism = Leninism.... Liberalism = Bolshevism)
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To: Stellar Dendrite

That speech he gave the other day reminded me of Nixon's historic "Checkers" speech. "My family... and my little dog Checkers..."


47 posted on 05/28/2005 8:41:55 PM PDT by johnb838 (Liberalism = Leninism.... Liberalism = Bolshevism)
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To: Conservative Firster

"for crimes that include trying to make a living for their families. "


I guess Germany didn't invade France, they just wanted to make better lives for everyone?

Considering the negative consequences illegals are causing, we need to stop it. If Mayor Hickenlooper wants to hire Mexicans, let him hire legal Mexican immigrants.


48 posted on 05/28/2005 8:52:12 PM PDT by shellshocked (They're undocumented Border Patrol agents, not vigilantes.)
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To: Rodentking

Yup, it's a frickin' mess alright.

Another contradiction that always gets me is the bit about "they're here to make a better life," then we read all these sob story articles about the appalling conditions they're forced to live in. And as I mentioned in another thread, never a word about the Mexican government's own complicity in all this. But hey, as long as we're not paying $37 or whatever for a head of lettuce...


49 posted on 05/28/2005 9:56:38 PM PDT by cartman90210 ("Sorry kids, those people from the future will do the same job for 25 cents!")
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To: Conservative Firster
And, Driscoll says, it's not unlike firing members of his own family.

Think of it as fighting a battle to save your family, Driscoll.

500,000 illegal aliens a year is an INVASION.

50 posted on 05/29/2005 12:06:06 AM PDT by MegaSilver
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