Rep. Mo Brooks: Congress, White House Hurting American Workers With Foreign Labor Increases

Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., left, and Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., right, emerge from the Capitol office of House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, as the scheduled vote on his debt plan bill is delayed in Washington, Thursday night, July 28, 2011.
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

There is no labor shortage in America, but rather a surplus that drives down wages and is exacerbated by ever increasing levels immigration, Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL), says.

“Unemployed and underpaid Americans desperate for a good-paying job have every right to be angry at a federal government that takes American jobs from American citizens and gives them to foreigners,” Brooks said on the House floor Thursday.

The Alabama Republican highlighted a recent Center for Immigration Studies analysis of Census data that found from 2007 to 2014, the wages of many low-skilled, non-agricultural employees declined. For example, Brooks said, security guard wages declined 6.1 percent, cooks wages dropped by 4.4 percent, janitors pay declined by 1.2 percent, ushers, lobby attendants, and ticket takers went down 7.1 percent and hotel clerks dropped 7 percent.

“This falling wage data is compelling evidence that there is no shortage of American labor and, to the contrary, that there is an oversupply of American labor that demands cutting foreign labor, not expanding it,” Brooks said

Specifically Brooks took issue Thursday with a provision that effectively increases four-fold the number of visas available for low-skill, temporary non-agricultural foreign workers contained in the recently-passed 2,000 page Omnibus spending bill. He further slammed the White House’s New Year’s Eve, 200-page proposal to circumvent green card caps “by approving unlimited numbers of work permits for foreigners who don’t have green cards.”

“This White House action is yet another brazen display of contempt for immigration statutes, the rule of law, and American workers.  The White House argues importing foreign labor is necessary because of a claimed shortage of American labor,” he said.

Brooks further targeted House Speaker Paul Ryan’s recent claim that increases continued in the Omnibus were included to “help small business who cannot find labor when there’s a surge in demand for their labor like seafood processing, or tourism.”

Brooks called such claims “political bunk.”

“While these surges in foreign worker visas and foreign labor work permits is a huge victory for special interests that profit from suppressed wages, it is a debilitating loss for struggling American families,” he said.

He added that 57 percent of Americans without a high school diploma were without a job in the second quarter of 2015.

“That’s a lot of Americans who would love to have those jobs President Obama and Congress denied Americans and gave to foreigners,” Brooks said.

The Alabama lawmaker encouraged that Americans “remember their anger during 2016’s primary and general elections.”

“That is the way to force Washington to represent us,” he said.