Photo by TK/Flickr (Creative Commons)
The tools of a trade in which subcontracted labor is common, November 2009
The illegal hiring scandals that have landed both Meg Whitman and Lou Dobbs in hot water in the course of just over a week have placed a spotlight on the role of employers in illegal immigration, bringing up questions about how involved employers need to be in verifying workers' legal status, and whether it's even possible to avoid unauthorized workers in an economy that depends on low-wage help.
Both cases also raise questions about the role of the middleman - the employment agency or contractor who provides the workers. In GOP gubernatorial candidate Whitman's case, her ex-housekeeper, Nicandra Diaz Santillan, was hired through an agency. In the case of Dobbs, the ex-CNN anchor known for his stringent views on illegal immigration - and employers who contribute to it - the workers interviewed by The Nation, which broke the story yesterday, worked for contractors who provided services to Dobbs, on his properties and for his daughter's horses.
Photo by Leslie Berestein Rojas/KPCC
Outside a mini-mall at Valley Boulevard and Fremont Street, October 8, 2010
In keeping with yesterday's post, a commercial sign that hints at the ethnic mix in Alhambra, home now to a community news website published in English, Spanish and Mandarin. I've been encountering this sign during my commute north since starting here during the summer.
How Immigration Reform Got Caught in the Deportation Dragnet - COLORLINES How a young Texan born in Bangladesh wound up deported after a quick trip to Mexico.
Lou Dobbs Denies Knowingly Hiring Contractor Who Used Illegal Workers, Decries Double Standard - ABC News The former CNN anchor who reportedly relied on illegal immigrants to care for his horses and properties said a "smear piece" held him to a double standard.
The Plum Line - AUDIO of Sharron Angle suggesting Sharia Law a threat in America - The Washington Post Angle recorded at a town hall meeting: "They are building mosques all over the place."
Lawrence O'Donnell Lou Dobbs | The Nation | Immigration | Mediaite On the televised debate between Dobbs and The Nation's Isabel McDonald, who reported in the magazine that undocumented immigrants had worked for Dobbs.
A story that appeared today in The Nation, since reported elsewhere, alleges that undocumented immigrants worked for former CNN host Lou Dobbs, tending to his properties and to his daughter's prize horses. The story has since been picked up by several other news outlets. Dobbs is best known, of course, for his extremely strict position on illegal immigration, which has included advocating criminal penalties for those who hire unauthorized workers.
The former host of Lou Dobbs Tonight has since criticized the liberal magazine's investigation as a "hit piece" and denies having hired illegally, making the point that it is not his responsibility to check papers. According to The Nation, which interviewed five people who allegedly worked for Dobbs while undocumented, the workers were hired by contractors.