“If you aren’t for E-Verify, you aren’t serious about controlling immigration," writes Mark Krikorian in Compact Magazine.
addresses smuggling, fake IDs, and more. But its centerpiece is E-Verify, an online tool that makes it hard for illegal aliens to get hired. House Republicans are also trying to pass a bill that includes an E-Verify mandate.
If you aren’t for E-Verify, you aren’t serious about controlling immigration. Building a wall can only get you so far in controlling illegal immigration. The same goes for hiring Border Patrol agents, prosecuting border-jumpers, and tightening asylum rules. All these measures are important—but if illegal aliens are home-free once they get past the border, then walls, moats, and alligators won’t stop them from trying. And if enough keep trying, many will succeed. After all, the border with Mexico is nearly 2,000 miles long, and while Border Patrol agents do admirable work, they aren’t supermen.
Unfortunately, for too many politicians on the right, even among those striking populist poses, the border is where their immigration hawkishness stops.
Not coincidentally, this aligns with the interests of many employers, who want as loose a labor market as they can manage. Having multiple workers chasing each job allows bosses to keep wages low and avoid the recruitment efforts they would have to undertake in a tighter labor market. That’s why the universal use of E-Verify in hiring is essential, both as a policy matter and as a political litmus test.
Real immigration control requires making it as difficult as possible to live here illegally, to reduce the incentives for those who would cross the border illegally or overstay their visas. And the chief way to do that is to make it hard to get a job. The harder it is, the fewer people will come illegally.
That’s where E-Verify comes in…