House Speaker Paul Ryan is facing Democratic criticism for his planned visa-giveaway to Irish college-graduates, and the Irish government is reportedly trying to overcome the opposition by promising to deliver reciprocal benefits for American graduates.
The Democratic criticism came from Hawaiian Sen. Brian Schatz, who responded to a Politico article on the controversy by suggesting that Ryan was acting more favorably towards Irish than towards other groups seeking to migrant into the United States:
Now do everyone else. https://t.co/kKI8GQ9iyQ
— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) December 15, 2018
Paul Ryan is still the Speaker of the House and they are out of session until Wednesday, with shutdown looming Friday. But, in his defense he IS (checks notes) working on getting more (checks notes again to make sure) people from Ireland into America. Seriously he is doing that.
— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) December 15, 2018
Schatz’s comment came after Politico followed Breitbart’s coverage of the E-3 visa, but Politico added an ethnic spin to the straightforward debate over Ryan’s support for the corporate outsourcing of college-grad jobs.
The E-3 visa program now transfers roughly 22,000 U.S.-based jobs to Australian graduates — but Ryan’s bill would allow Irish graduates into the E-3 program, likely doubled the outsourcing to near 50,000 jobs in each year.
Politico‘s ethnic spin began:
House Speaker Paul Ryan is leaving Congress with a grateful nod to his Irish ancestors.
A bill pushed by Ryan, whose family fled famine-ravaged Ireland in 1851, could provide Irish nationals with thousands of additional U.S. work visas each year.
Passage of the Irish visa bill would be an unexpected but not illogical conclusion to Paul Ryan’s speakership. He worked behind the scenes in 2013 and 2014 on a bill to overhaul the legal immigration system, an effort that eventually died under then-Speaker John Boehner.
Ryan maintains close ties with Irish officials, and the 48-year-old Wisconsinite said earlier this year that sometime after his 60th birthday he would like to become the U.S. ambassador to Ireland.
The Politico article also prompted Eugene Scott, a Washington Post reporter, to claim ethnic double-standards by “the Right.” The claim as refuted by Mark Krikorian, director of the Center for Immigration Studies:
What are you talking about? It happens all the time, with congressmen of every ethnic group (and it's always wrong.) https://t.co/3MmE30KTw1
— Mark Krikorian (@MarkSKrikorian) December 17, 2018
It is not clear if Scott knew the visa-giveaway was uncovered by Breitbart News.
The criticism is also prompted demands for a broader giveaway to Indian workers. The demand came from the immigraiton lawyers hired by Sen. Chuck Schumer to write the 2014 “Gang of Eight” amnesty. The lawyer, Leon Fresco, is working with business groups to get GOP support for a bill that would provide a fast track to immigration and green cards for roughly 600,000 Indian visa-workers and their family members.
For the record, I love the Irish bill. I very much hope their bill passes. But anyone who supports their bill (which actually has an amnesty and new numbers in it) and opposes our bill (which has neither) must be called a racist. There is literally no other explanation. https://t.co/TBnZRLQmTW
— Leon Fresco (@FrescoLeon) December 17, 2018
However, Fresco’s push to win citizenship for outsourcing workers has run into congressional opposition, partly because legislators know it would accelerate job-outsourcing to India and stall salaries for college-graduate voters. The legislation, titled H.R. 392, was sponsored by GOP Rep. Kevin Yoder. In November, Yoder lost his suburban seat in Kansas amid opposition from U.S. graduates who have been hit hard by job outsourcing to low-wage Indian graduates.
Tech Billionaires urge fast-track green cards for 400,000 contract visa-workers – and many more later. Just guessing here, but maybe most Americans prefer fewer visa workers for biz & higher salaries for their families? https://t.co/yXhMswXOXK
— Neil Munro (@NeilMunroDC) December 8, 2018
Meanwhile, the Irish government is scrambling to overcome the growing opposition to Ryan’s visa giveaway.
The legislation is not being set to Senate committees, so it needs unanimous Senate support — and a presidential signature — before it becomes law. Irish media reports say one Senator is blocking passage — even though 13 GOP Senators will need many votes from suburban college-graduates in 2020.
The 13 GOP Senators likely facing voters in 2020 are Tennesee Sen. Lamar Alexander, Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy, Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotten, Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst, Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, Georgia Sen. David Perdue, Idaho Sen. Jim Risch, Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts, South Dakota Sen. Mike Rounds, Alaska Sen. Dan Sullivan, Sen. Thom Tillis, and Tennessee Sen. Mitch McConnell, who is the Majority Leader and controls the Senate’s business.
GOP Senators who refuse to block Ryan’s pro-Irish legislation will likely face charges of racial or ethnic favoritism in 2020.
The opposition to Ryan’s giveaway is partly fueled by the one-sided trade in the legislation.
The bill offers roughly 5,000 work-permits per year to Irish graduates of any age. Each visa lasts for two years and can be renewed endlessly. The formula will likely deliver 10,00o Irish graduates to the U.S. labor market in just two years — and will eventually fill 25,000 jobs if the Irish graduates stay for only an average of only five years. The visa also provides work permits for the spouses of E-3 recipients.
But Ryan’s legislation does not offer any reciprocal benefits to young American graduates. Instead, the Irish government has offered to let Americans aged 55 and older retire in Ireland and spend their 401K savings on Irish-provided housing, services, and products. That offer is a double economic loss for Americans — the loss of jobs for young graduates, and the loss of jobs that would be created by the spending of retired Americans.
The British Independent newspaper reported the Irish government is trying to sweeten the offer:
As one of his final acts, House Speaker Paul Ryan is pushing a proposal that would greatly expand access to work visas for Irish nationals — a nod to his ancestral heritage — and drawing backlash from both sides of the political aisle.
Ireland’s taoiseach [Prime Minister] Leo Varadkar has reportedly heavily lobbied Mr Trump on the bill, with Irish officials vowing additional concessions if the measure is approved by the White House, including easing access for American retirees who wish to move to the country.
The Irish government appears willing to offer more than just employment visas to cement the deal, according to a document circulated among Senate offices and obtained by POLITICO.
In addition to reciprocal work permits, the proposal suggests changes to make it easier for qualifying Americans to retire in Ireland.
The E-3 giveaway, however, just tip if a very large — and unreciprocated — iceberg.
U.S. employers keep a population of roughly 1.5 million foreign visa-workers in U.S.-based jobs sought by American college graduates. The 1.5 million foreign workers are hired via the H-1B, L-1, OPT, CPT, J-1, O-1, and TN visa programs.
Yet U.S. politicians have failed to win reciprocal visa-programs for American graduates to work overseas.
Ryan’s E-3 visa giveaway was exposed by Breitbart News:
Speaker Paul Ryan is trying to sneak a big outsourcing & amnesty bill thru Congress to aid Irish gov't. No benefits for young Americans, of course. This ethnic, private, crony capitalist giveaway will crash if even one Senator asks for a fair exchange. https://t.co/Vi3soLWRsF
— Neil Munro (@NeilMunroDC) December 8, 2018
U.S. and Irish politicians are quietly cooperating to transfer 5000 white-collar jobs per year from American graduates to Irish grads via the E-3 visa program. A sneak Senate vote is due soon. In 'fair trade,' US retirees could spend their 401Ks in Ireland https://t.co/CKRIerTh4E
— Neil Munro (@NeilMunroDC) December 14, 2018
In 2012, a similar bill by then-Sen. Scott Brown spark claims of ethnic favoritism. An op-ed in the Huffington Post suggested the Massachusetts Republican was motivated by ethnic favoritism:
But why should the Irish get a special bill? Filipinos and Chinese have been in the United States since the 1700s, and the Philippines has had a “special bond“ with the U.S. which continues to the present. The borders, citizens, economies, and politics of Mexico and the U.S. have been and will always be inextricably linked. Thousands of professionals from the Philippines, China, Mexico, and other nations also clamor for America’s promise of opportunity.
[Michael Innis-Jiménez, a University of Alabama professor and expert on Latino and Labor issues said], who is of Irish and Mexican descent, admitted that he thinks race is a factor.
“Sure, I think race is always in play with national-level U.S. immigration policy,” he said. “But I think it is a bit more complicated. It is also about economic class and political clout. Few Americans are going to complain about more white, educated Irish immigrants. Most of them will end up in the Northeast.”
Nationwide, the U.S. establishment’s economic policy of using legal migration to boost economic growth shifts wealth from young people towards older people by flooding the market with cheap white collar and blue collar foreign labor. That flood of outside labor spikes profits and Wall Street values by cutting salaries for manual and skilled labor that blue collar and white collar employees.
The cheap labor policy widens wealth gaps, reduces high tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, hurts kids’ schools and college education, pushes Americans away from high tech careers, and sidelines at least five million marginalized Americans and their families, including many who are now struggling with fentanyl addictions.
Immigration also steers investment and wealth away from towns in heartland states because coastal investors can more easily hire and supervise the large immigrant populations who prefer to live in coastal cities. In turn, that investment flow drives up coastal real-estate prices, pricing poor U.S. Latinos and blacks out of prosperous cities, such as Berkeley and Oakland.