Frank Sharry: “Another Trump Cover Up Underway”
News alert: President Trump demonizes and dehumanizes undocumented immigrants as a politician at the same time uses and abuses them as a businessman.
Joshua Partlow and David Fahrenthold of the Washington Post report that, following a series of high-profile reports drawing attention to the fact that Trump businesses have long knowingly hired and deliberately exploited undocumented workers, that the Trump Organization is now using E-Verify on many of their golf courses.
The organization’s newfound reliance on E-Verify is clearly part of a cover-their-tracks strategy after being caught in the act. And it comes just weeks after President Trump expressed strong reservations about E-Verify. It seems the President’s nativist politics is in competition with his plutocratic practices.
Meanwhile, a second Post story puts the latest story into a larger context and pattern, asking and answering 7 key questions about the revelations and implications of Trump’s exploitative hiring practices. As the piece notes,
Trump reaped the financial benefits of using undocumented employees — an ability to pay his employees lower wages and fewer benefits — while reaping the political benefits of attacking it.
According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
Another Trump cover up is underway, this time at his golf clubs, resorts and other properties. As an employer, he systematically cheats and abuses undocumented immigrants, which in turn cheats American workers by depressing their wages, and cheats honest employers who are undercut by his lawlessness. As a president, Trump is a fraud and a failure on immigration.
He is the embodiment of an unscrupulous employer — hiring and exploiting undocumented labor and undercutting industry-wide wages and labor practices in the process — and a living example of how in his peddling of xenophobia he is selling a false bill of goods. Of course, it’s obvious that an employer in hospitality, office and property management, agriculture, construction and golf properties would employ undocumented workers; everyone knows those industries in particular are sustained by immigrant workers and those workers have been bravely speaking out. But, instead of a real and sustainable vision for reform — one that puts immigration on a legal footing at the point of admission, the point of hire and in the adherence to worker protections, Trump opposes legalization, opposes aggressive labor enforcement, opposes market-sensitive legal immigration levels, and opposes E-Verify — with or without broad reform. For all his race-baiting rhetoric, let’s not miss the simple fact that he comes down on the side of lawless and abusive employers — of which he is one.
See below for key excerpts from the two latest Washington Post stories:
As a candidate railing against undocumented immigrants, Trump declared in a 2016 speech in Arizona, ‘We will ensure that E-Verify is used to the fullest extent possible under existing law, and we will work with Congress to strengthen and expand its use across the country.’
The same year, Trump told MSNBC host Chris Matthews: ‘I’m using E-Verify on just about every job. . . . I’m using E-Verify, and I’ll tell you, it works.’
It was not until this year, however, that all of the company’s U.S. golf courses began using the system …
Recently, the president has adopted a more skeptical tone about the idea of mandating E-Verify nationwide.
‘The one problem is E-Verify is so tough,’ Trump told Fox News earlier this week. The White House declined to comment when asked whether Trump was aware that E-Verify had triggered firings at his own company.
The Washington Post: 7 questions about Trump’s use of undocumented workers at his golf courses
President Trump has built much of his presidency — and his 2020 reelection campaign — around a simple message: Illegal immigration is a national crisis. Trump says that undocumented immigrants threaten national security, and they also hurt American workers by taking jobs and lowering overall wages.
“Tolerance for illegal immigration is not compassionate,” Trump said in his State of the Union address this year. “It is cruel.”
But, as The Washington Post has detailed this year, Trump’s company has relied in private on workers without legal immigration status even as Trump denounced such immigrants in public.
For years, and into Trump’s presidency, the president’s golf clubs employed undocumented workers as waiters, groundskeepers and housekeepers, according to the accounts of more than 40 former workers and supervisors who spoke to The Post. In doing so, Trump reaped the financial benefits of using undocumented employees — an ability to pay his employees lower wages and fewer benefits — while reaping the political benefits of attacking it.