What is a Discharge Petition…and can it help with Immigration Reform?
According to online encyclopedia -Wiki:
A discharge petition is a means of bringing a bill out of committee and to the floor for consideration without a report from the committee and usually without cooperation of the leadership.
Discharge Petitions are most often associated with the U.S. House of Representatives, though many state legislatures have similar procedures. They are used when the chair of a committee refuses to place a bill or resolution on the committee’s agenda (keeping the bill in committee without ever bringing it to the full House for a vote).
A successful petition “discharges” the committee from further consideration of a bill or resolution and brings it directly to the floor. The modern discharge petition requires the signature of an absolute majority of House members (218 members).
House Republicans have 33 MORE seats – but they’re using that slim majority to CONTROL the agenda – when a Majority Vote would pass the legislation. If Republicans kill Immigration Reform – all Democrats need are 34 seats to regain the majority. 2014 Mid Term elections – just 14 months away…
Now powerful backers of Immigration Reform like the AFL-CIO and (the one I love the best) pro-reform organization America’s Voice think a Discharge Petition may just be the way to get the issue to the floor of the U.S House of Representatives…
Republican House Speaker John Boehner caved in to Tea Party pressure and has INSISTED that any immigration bill must have the support of a majority of his fellow Republicans in the House.
Boehner is trying to protect his job as Speaker (over protecting the wishes of America) by BOWING DOWN to the extremist, racist Tea Party wing of the GOP (the ones who HATE President Obama because he is black but lack the cojones to actually SAY so PUBLICLY.
They will NEVER support Immigration Reform…and instead cloud the issue with buzzwords like: Border Security. Or allowing the immigrants kids to be legal but keeping the parents illegal because the parents will vote Democrat. ALL Republicans ever see are voting booths. They don’t see the Human Toll/the HUMAN SUFFERING. Republicans just see political outcomes – and this is why they manipulate and come up with schemes to WIN ELECTIONS at any cost.
Therefore Tea Party Republicans disingenuously say the reason they are anti immigration is because:
- Immigrants are taking American jobs.
- Immigrants are depressing wages.
They are trumpeting loudly that immigration reform means a-billion people will invade America…yes, these 11 million undocumented will have 11 million kids – and 11 million grandkids and their 11 million lovers – plus their 22 million parents and another 22 million grandparents not forgetting 11 million aunts, 11 million uncles, 11 million cousins plus 11 million neighbors…and the 11 million people who need to be bribed!
They forget the majority of these 11-million undocumented immigrants are already WORKING…and yet still, employers, especially farmers across America CANNOT find the workers they need…
There are examples in states where they passed anti-immigration legislation, immigrants left, American workers showed up then left after a couple days – and the crops are rotting in the fields.
I pulled samples from news articles online:
- Worker shortages have prompted some Alabama farmers who grow labor-intensive produce to plant less, rather than have crops rot in the fields again this year.
Last fall (June 2011) Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley signed a tough law combating illegal immigration, which prompted undocumented workers to flee the state. Few locals will perform the grueling work of picking crops, and farmers stuck in a agricultural system built on illegal labor are struggling to find replacements before their produce rots.
Georgia passed a similar immigration law in 2011. When undocumented workers fled, farmers lost around 40% of their workers and $140 million worth of blueberries, melons, onions, and other crops due to labor shortages. This year Georgia farmers again fear they will be short on workers to pick the crops, and many have scaled back production or stopped planting altogether.
- Many farmers want to hire local workers, but it is increasingly difficult to find U.S. natives with the proper skills. Few are willing or able to perform the physically taxing and low paying labor which requires them to move with the crops, even with wages of $15-$20 an hour. Georgia recently experimented with creating a program that allowed parolees to work as farm laborers, but it was unsuccessful when they wouldn’t — or couldn’t — endure the grueling days.
- Minnesota Business Immigration Coalition, which has broad buy-in and advocates for smart immigration growth in Minnesota. And because of its efforts, hundreds of Minnesota businesses now back the push to modernize federal immigration laws. Their message: Without more immigrants, Minnesota’s labor force will fall short of the workers it will need, at both the higher and lower ends of the skills spectrum, as baby boomers retire.
- South Carolina’s Chalmers Carr needs Congress to pass immigration reform that includes a workable program for farmers and ranchers. If it doesn’t happen, he’ll continue having problems getting his peaches to market.
Carr brings in more than 500 Mexican workers through the onerous H-2A program. They trim peach trees and pick and pack about 2 million boxes of peaches annually on his Saluda County, S.C.-based Titan Farms.
A national survey of H-2A employers shows that on average workers arrive 22 days after they’re needed because of administrative delays, resulting in an economic loss of nearly $320 million.
As much as he would like to avoid H-2A’s costs and headaches, Carr is left with no other option. In the last two years he’s advertised in the U.S. for more than 2,000 jobs.
“We’ve had about 600 U.S. workers apply for the jobs-about one-third of what I need-but we’ve had only 15 take the job and stay all the way through,” he said. “How can I pick these crops with 15 workers?”
Emphasizing the urgent need for reform, Carr encouraged Americans to consider the alternative.
“Your fruit is going to be harvested one way or another by a foreign national,” he said. “Do you want it harvested here in this country with our food safety regulations versus having that foreign national harvest them in another country where you don’t have the same food safety protocols?”
IT IS TIME for Congress to act…
We want a vote in the House…let’s see who is FOR reform and let’s see who is AGAINST it….
Listen John Boehner: We DEMAND a Discharge Petition.
You and your House Republicans should not hold Immigration Reform HOSTAGE over 33 votes!