HB 116 – Utah’s Guest Worker Plan – HB116

HB 116 - Utah's Guest Worker Plan - HB116

Utah’s plan for solving some of the social issues surrounding illegal immigration

There have been a lot of arguments against HB 116 in recent weeks, and I thought I would address a few of the concerns surrounding this bill. It is one thing to say the bill is imperfect, flawed, etc., it is another to use lies, hate, and fallacy to derail it.

ClaimGrants Amnesty to Illegal Aliens and Rewards Criminal Activity

ResponseAmnesty is a word thrown around a lot these days, and it has developed a negative connotation that I’m not sure it has ever had before. The dictionary defines it as follows: “a period during which a law is suspended to allow offenders toadmit their crime without fear of prosecution.” HB 116 does not grant amnesty because it changes the law and makes it lawful for non citizens to work in the state of Utah. Furthermore, the phrase “rewards criminal activity” really overstates the issue. No one is being pardoned of murder, theft, violence, or the like; and while crossing the border is illegal, it is also expressly not within the state’s right to confront that issue.


ClaimCreates a Special Class of People who are above the Law

ResponseAgain, the law has been changed, therefore, they are in compliance with it.


ClaimMakes Utah a Sanctuary State for Illegal Aliens

ResponseThe law applies to illegal immigrants who are residents of the state before May 2011. Since the bill has been passed there has been no evidence that the state has witnessed a sudden influx of illegal immigrants, and people will be unable to participate in the program afterward.


ClaimDoes nothing to address ID/SSN Theft & Forgery

ResponseActually, it does. ID/SSN theft has been a problem because it is a prerequisite for employment. The law changes this, which should eliminate the demand for such documents. It also uses the fine illegal immigrants must pay to partake in the program to establish a task force to fight future problems in this area.


ClaimViolates the U.S. Constitution Article 1, Section 8

ResponseArticle 1, Section 8 of the United States Constitution addresses issues of citizenship. Utah’s law is not addressing citizenship, but employment. The law does not allow illegal aliens to stay in the United States, it simply allows them to work. If INS wants to deport people, it can.


ClaimViolates Utah State Law (Title 67-5-28)

ResponseThe Utah legislature has the power to change Utah law, and it has.


ClaimUtah taxpayers pay $500 million/year for Illegal Immigration

ResponseThese numbers are very much up for debate. However, the bill addresses this perceived problem by taxing these workers. It also allows for fair employment since businesses will no longer be able to keep wages down on the threat of reporting them.


ClaimIs contrary to the will of the People of Utah

ResponseUtah seems to be split on this issue. Besides, when has the will of the people ever made a law legitimate or otherwise?


ClaimAG Shurleff, Sen. Bramble & Gov. Herbert are selling this to rest of the
nation as Utah’s Solution for America

ResponseWhy couldn’t it be a solution for America?


ClaimUtah is now in a position to be sued by Federal Government

ResponsePerhaps, but the Obama administration has given no indication as to whether or not they are concerned with our law. This is quite contrary to the very quick and vocal response it had to Arizona’s immigration law. At this point it looks like the Federal government may not have an issue with it.

About Joseph

I live in Heber City, Utah with my wife and family. View all posts by Joseph

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