There are many similar instances of Mr. Kobach insisting that “Reasonable Suspicion” is a viable legal standard that will not encourage racial profiling. Very recently, February 16 in fact, he stated that reasonable suspicion can include a lot of things.
“Kobach said that could include someone acting evasive when a police officer asks for identification, if someone is driving on a known smuggling corridor, or even evidence of dust and sand that could come from a long journey across the desert.”
REALLY??? Driving on a known smuggling Corridor (i.e., I-70 or I-35) or evidence of dust on their clothing that could have come from a long journey across the desert???????? I cannot believe how stupid this argument is. Dust and sand are also evidence of working in construction, on a farm, with sheetrock, on a roof, in a dirty basement…but is very unlikely that it is because the person walked across the desert to get to the US and then never bothered to shower before arriving to Kansas. As if people just start walking in Cuidad Juarez and don’t stop until they reach their destination (Arizona or Kansas City or Minnesota apparently Kobach thinks that there would be opportunity to wash the dust off of themselves prior to their encounter with the police.)
Other evidence of reasonable suspicion I have heard is people acting evasive, not speaking English, or speaking broken English, driving in a crowded car or a car that is riding heavy, or if the car is old or looks like it has been on a long journey…wow.
How can anyone say with a straight face that this is not racial profiling. This is racist and a thinly veiled attempt to target poor, brown people. Like it or not, there is still racism and we as a society should adamantly oppose any law that institutionalizes and legitimizes the practice of stopping someone because they are brown, or have several people in the car, or are…god forbid dusty.
Incidentally, the police chiefs of most major cities are against this kind of thing because it amounts to an unfunded mandate that places an inordinate amount of financial strain on local police. It costs money to house immigration detainees, millions of dollars a year in a city of any size. This is money that most cities, in our times of budget shortfalls, do not have and if they do have it, wouldn’t that money be better spent on community issues(more cops or fire, fixing streets, schools). Kobach does not think so.
In his term as Secretary of State, a job that does not include anything having to do with immigration, he has spent very little time doing the SoS business or readying the state for the huge expenditure that his pet project, voter ids, will cost. That law went into effect on Jan 1, 2012, but no DMV or Election headquarter is able to make the the “free ids” that were promised in the bill so as not to disenfranchise low income voters. No one has been trained, there is no equipment, no one is sure how to do it. Similarly, you apparently need a birth certificate to get one of these ids and those, too were suppose to be free. Well that law, making them free, does not go into effect until 2013. Very convenient. Yet he has had time to give over 70 press conferences and interviews about immigration, attend many senate hearings to testify in favor of his pet bills styled after Arizona and Alabama and of course, bill hundreds of hours to OTHER cities and states defending them in their costly litigation over his anti immigration bills.
He is a crazy person and a racist. Period. And he is irresponsible with the taxpayer’s money and is ignoring his SoS job in Kansas in favor of making himself more famous. Vilest form of politician. Nothing but an opportunistic megalomaniac who cares only about doing what it takes to make him more political powerful.
Earlier this week I posted a series of emails between Mr. Kraus and a Missouri Resident who also is an ESL teacher in Missouri. This teacher contacted me after reading one of my blogs about SB590 and how it would be awful for her as a teacher and for her students and their families. I encouraged her to email the committee members. She did and the series of emails that I posted was the result. Feeling as though I could not let Mr. Kraus’ intentional ignorance of how difficult it is to determine the immigration status of someone I emailed him in response to the email he had sent the ESL teacher. I wanted to list that exchange. I have not received any other response from him after my last email. The bill passed form Committee as did the English Only DL bill showing that they are perfectly willing to completely ignore testimony and do what they want. Plus, judging from both his testimony and his comments in the emails, he clearly has not even read the bill. As you will see it is confusing, poorly written, and contradictory.
My email to him:
From: Angie Williams [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Wednesday, January 25, 2012 12:02 AM
To: Will Kraus
Subject: Your response to XXXXXXXXX regarding the simplicity of determining immigration statusI testified against your bill last Tuesday about the very things you address to XXXXXX in your recent email to her that she has been so kind as to forward to me. Since you either were not listening or Neither I nor the other attorney who testified about this issue were clear enough so I thought I would send you some concrete examples of why you are simply incorrect in your belief that one’s immigration status is easily determined, that it is not going to be a drain on resources to our schools and it is going to produce a meaningful number.Here is your response to her:
> You are right. I do not understand why it is a burden to be asked your immigration status. It is a simple fact, nothing more. You are either a citizen or not. If not, you are either documented or not. If you are documented showing that documentation is not a burden. If you are not, it is a simple answer to a simple question. Since we all agree federal law requires any child an education and since this bill prohibits any use of the information gathered other than to collect numerical data for DESE, I don�ft understand why anyone would be afraid of that process.
> The area undisputed is that lack of federal enforcement of current law costs Missouri taxpayers money. I don�ft believe attempts to quantify that amount are at all misguided.
> My door is always open,
> Will Kraus
Angela,It is simple.First, you seem to want to insert upon myself and this legislation things that are just not true. I have no desire to fix the federal immigration issue. That is the federal government’s job. I have no desire to create a list of twenty eight categories and the legislation does not ask for such. I have no desire to enter the (all too) complicated field of immigration law. And I have no desire to harm a single person. If you were willing to grant me those things we could start this discussion on more common ground. However you seem to assume I have negative intent, and that won’t get us anywhere.In your lists below, and I don’t have the time to answer each one, the answers are very simple. First we are only asking the current citizenship status of the CHILD. The parent’s status is not questioned or asked. If a child was born here they have a birth certificate and can be checked off as a citizen. If they are not citizens and have completed documents to be here legally they can be marked that way and show those documents, whatever they are. If they do not have completed documents, even if they are in the process, they are not here legally until those documents are completed.Will the data collected be full proof? Of course not, no data is. Will it give us a better estimate of costs than guesses provide by partisan groups? Certainly. The argument I have not heard, from any opposition, is that there is NO cost to taxpayers. Since there is a cost, I believe taxpaying Missouri families have a right to know what that cost is. You bring up morals but seem to only care about morality when it comes to helping non-citizens. I applaud those efforts from a moral (if not legal) perspective. I’m not sure why you can’t understand the moral argument on the other side that tries to protect families already here, many of whom are on the edge economically and just can’t afford the taxes they pay now, much less more.Angela, I’d prefer to not use guesses, but the closest guess I have heard is that illegal immigrants who live in Missouri cost the state over $300 million. That is $300 million that could go to education, social programs, and health care of OUR citizens. How is it moral to ignore that?My door is always open,Will KrausAnd here is mine to this email:
I actually do not think you have negative intent in that you are purposefully trying to pick on Hispanics, or Indians, or what ever other immigrant there is. What I am trying to point out is that your proposal is not a simple matter of looking at a utility bill. My point is that you are trying to come up with a number that does not exist and you are proposing that public schools, who are already very overburdened, be the ones to do it with no financial support to try to help. You first claimed that you are only trying to discover the citizenship status of the child and that the parent’s immigration status is not asked. but in the law it specifically says the school must determine if the child is born outside the jurisdiction of the United States or is the child of an alien not lawfully present. It says it twice in fact. I highlighted it below.
161.245. 1. At the time of enrollment of a student in a public
2 elementary or secondary school in this state, such school shall
3 determine whether the student enrolling was born outside the
4 jurisdiction of the United States or is the child of an alien not lawfully
5 present in the United States and qualifies for assignment to an English
6 as second language class or other remedial program.
7 2. When making the determination required by subsection 1 of
8 this section, the school shall rely upon presentation of the student’s
9 original birth certificate or a certified copy thereof.
10 3. If it is determined that the student was born outside the
11 jurisdiction of the United States or is the child of an alien not lawfully
12 present in the United States upon review of the student’s birth
13 certificate or where such certificate is not available for any reason, the
14 parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the student shall notify the
15 school of the actual citizenship or immigration status of the student
16 under federal law within thirty days of the date of the student’s
How else is it going to be determined if the child is a child of an alien not lawfully present unless the status of the parents is asked? In fact, what the statute asks is for the school to determine if the kid was born outside the jurisdiction of the US OR is the child of an alien unlawfully present in the US AND qualifies for ESL or other remedial services. So you are asking the school to determine if the child falls into one of 2 categories: 1. Born outside the Jurisdiction of the US or 2. Is the child of an alien unlawfully present and also qualifies for ESL or other remedial services.
The schools are suppose to do this by looking at a copy of the kid’s birth certificate. The problem with this is that looking at a birth certificate only shows the physical location of where someone was born. It does not give any indication if the child is a citizen (unless it is a BC from the US) or if the child is the child of a person unlawfully present and in need of ESL classes or Remedial classes. Finally, the law says that if it is determined that the kid was born outside of the US or is the child of an alien unlawfully present (now no qualification that they also have to qualify for ESL or other Remedial services like there is in the first paragraph) than it appears that section 3 asks the parents to provide the immigration status of the child under federal law within 30 days. This is where it is tricky because there are in fact situations where you are authorized to be here, yet have no official status nor any document to show you do.
Since the proposed law actually says under federal law than in order to comply there has to be a different method of counting those in between because they are in fact a class unto themselves. Your assertion that if they have completed paperwork but are not finished that they are not here legally is incorrect. Really there is not “legally” or “illegally.” There is in status and out of status, and having an application pending that gives you some immediate benefit while not conferring on you an actual visa classification is a status. Under immigration law if you have applied for extension of say you B1 tourist visa and that is being processed you are not considered out of status until the application is denied even if it is pending months after your original visa has expired. Similarly, a person who, for example, has applied for a VAWA application or a U visa or Asylum or Refugee status is in a protected status that is somewhere between. If they are denied their application they are for sure back to the out of status category, but while it is pending they are in a grey area that is really neither.
I say that because they are no longer at risk, baring a serious crime, of being put into removal proceedings. Once one of those application is filed for example there is a period of time that they continue to not be authorized to work but are not in danger of removal. After that period they will be allowed to apply for a work permit but are not in a category of immigrants yet because their application has not been approved or denied. With that work card they can get a social, driver’s license, work etc but they really do not have a status yet. So they will have documents showing they can stay here but no accompanying status designation. Maybe that doesn’t matter to you and you would count them as “illegal” anyways, but it is just not accurate and it is not what the proposed law seems to ask as it says that parents/guardians will provide the immigration status of the child according to federal law. Similarly, under federal law, unless an immigration judge has found an alien to be “unlawfully present” under a certain section of the Immigration and Nationality Act than he or she is not unlawfully present. Only an immigration judge is allowed to make that determination under federal law, so if the act requires that the school be notified of the immigration status under federal law the most the parent can do is say the child, entered without inspection, overstayed a visa or status pending. It is not the cut and dry answer you want but if you are going to use federal law as the basis then there is not going to be a cut and dry answer for many of the cases.
Secondly you also claim that the law does not ask for the creation of 28 categories but that a simple legal or no is all that it requires. However in this section below it specifically requires that the state board of education complete this annual report that provides data of lawfully present aliens by immigration classification, which means under what type of visa they have. That would mean that information would need to be provided by the schools. So all those Bs and Js and Ks would have to be determined.
. (1) The state board of education shall compile and submit an
42 annual public report to the general assembly. The report shall provide
43 data, aggregated by school, regarding the numbers of United States
44 citizens, of lawfully present aliens by immigration classification, and
45 of aliens believed to be unlawfully present in the United States enrolled
46 at all primary and secondary public schools in this state.
Similarly it goes farther and asks that these same categories be specifically applied to kids who qualify for ESL, so there will be a separate analysis for the ESL kids too.
47 shall also provide the number of students in each category
48 participating in English as a second language programs enrolled at such schools
It also says that the State board’s report must analyze the effect on the quality of education for other students that may have occurred, not that did, or that might occur in the future. How is that going to be determined? What if the effects on the quality of education is that all children are positively effected by going to school with students from other countries, thus exposing them to new cultures, languages and customs earlier in life making them better prepared for life in our international society and multi national world? The way this is written assumes that these kid’s presence effects education for the worst. Similarly I do no understand how these analysis can be made without some data from the classroom teachers, behavior of the children, problems with other students, time spent with them rather than citizens…
(2) The report shall analyze and identify the effects upon the
51 standard or quality of education provided to students who are citizens
52 of the United States residing in Missouri that may have occurred, or
53 are expected to occur in the future, as a consequence of the enrollment
54 of students who are aliens not lawfully present in the United States.
It also says that the report shall analyze the financial costs of providing these undocumented children with instruction, computers, textbooks, supplies, free or discounted school meals and extra curricular activities, which means that someone has to keep track of which “alien children unlawfully present in the US” are using at he very least non reusable supplies from the school, free or discounted meals and extra curricular activities. Unless you want the School board to just make up these numbers that means administration costs and monitoring costs at the school level.
) The report shall analyze and itemize the fiscal costs to the
56 state and its political subdivisions of providing educational instruction,
57 computers, textbooks and other supplies, free or discounted school
58 meals, and extracurricular activities to students who are aliens not
59 lawfully present in the United States.
You also say that since there may be even a small cost, the tax payers of Missouri need to know how much and that this formula is going to provide a better number than those provided by “partisan” groups. This report will be no different than any numbers by any partisan groups because it 1. Does not take into account taxes paid by the family of the undocumented child (at some point the child of the alien unlawfully present as well as “child of alien unlawfully present and qualifies for assignment to ESL or other remedial program, incidentally, while ESL is mentioned again, the “other remedial programs is not is just dropped from the statute)2. It doesn’t take into account any personal funds paid to the school for textbooks, extracurricular activities, field trips, fund raisers etc. 3. It inaccurately counts and improperly defines unlawfully present aliens. It is written in a way that presupposes 1. a negative effect in the quality of education for citizens (doesn’t mention or seem to care about those immigrants who have a status with a card to match) 2. a $0 contribution on the part of the unlawfully present student’s family in taxes and money given directly to the school.
It also tells the state board to make up some criteria for determining how unlawfully present aliens impact education for citizens (again not all legal student). In both cases it directs them to contract with reputable scholars to make this stuff up or analyze the data and prepare reports. So it is going to cost money at the state level to compile all this data and present it to the assembly as well as cost the schools money, time and resources to get the first level of data to the state board. That is alot of money to be spent to create a report that does not state a number any more accurately than all of these partisan reports that you claim to have. So, even using your $300 million dollar number, which I have never heard, and I eat sleep and breath this subject, we are now using this amount to educate them and adding all the costs of each school district in compiling and the state board in hiring experts to create criteria to measure how one child negatively impacts another by virtue of a status your formula may not even have gotten right and then making guesses on how it may have already effected the quality of education, how it MIGHT effect it in the future, writing all that up and presenting it to the general assembly then instituting that criteria they have been mandated to develop in all the schools. Not to mention the fact that you are not calculating the cost to Missouri tax payers of litigating this issue in federal court because we will get sued, not only by pro immigration groups and civil liberty groups like the ACLU but also by the Justice Department.
Putting aside the wisdom of this kind of law and feelings about immigration, I cannot for the life of me understand why it is being proposed when it is still being litigated. Here is a scenario that might put it into more perspective, your neighbor ripped off the side of his house to build a huge edition, spent tons of money of plans, materials and did so because the local “expert” on land use and permits told him he could do it without a permit or variance because in his untested interpretation he didn’t need one. After your neighbor has spent all this money and time and resources and got half way done, the city comes in and issues an injunction saying he has to stop because the “expert” is wrong about his untested theory. Your neighbor now has to spend more money on legal fees to fight this. You see his addition and think you would like to build one just like it so you go to him to find out who did his work, drew the plans etc. He then tells you about all the legal problems he is having with it and tells you about his untested theory as to why he is right. Maybe you agree with his interpretation, maybe not, maybe you think he might have a point but it could go either way. Whatever you opinion is, I bet you don’t choose to start ripping walls off of your own house and spending a ton of money just like your neighbor knowing you too are going to get sued, and have to stop in the middle and then spend a bunch of money on lawyers. I bet you wait and see how his own litigation turns out. If you wouldn’t do that with your own money why are you willing to do it with the tax payers you are so sure you are protecting. If nothing else it is so fiscally irresponsible to propose something you are 100% sure is going to end in a law suit that will cost millions. That is a number you can accurately predict and is readily available because you can simply look at Arizona, Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama. Let them fight it out and pay for it, when the dust clears if you are still so sure that money needs to be spent to study something that cannot be changed by the states then write a law that is in accordance with what the Supreme Court decides. Missouri is not going to be a trail blazer in anti-immigrant state laws with this bill because it has all, every word, already been tried and enjoined and is currently being litigated.
So far this plan only seems to spend more money and give nothing in return. Even if we assume it will give an accurate number…so. Federal law says that all children get to go to school no matter their status. It comes to nothing except spending more money. Since you also brought up morally, I am very interest in helping all people, immigrants and citizens. It is why I am writing another too long email to someone who probably isn’t going to be swayed at 1 am. Our current national discourse on immigration is not good for anyone. Not legal immigrants, “illegal” immigrants, citizens or any of those status’ in between. It is not good for our nation, for race relations, for our appearances to the rest of the world or for our economy. One of the reasons that this kind of law so angers me and so scares me is because it is going to produce a number (one I think is meaningless, but lets assume it can be given some legitimacy) that is going to be used to further polarize this discussion. If the number comes up with some astronomical amount that we as Missourians are allegedly spending to educate undocumented children and some made up criteria that shows immigrants have a negative impact on the education of citizens it is going to further anger people, make them more intolerant to immigrants or those perceived to be immigrants and more dug in about not discussing reform. If it produces a number that is very low because, say the person we contract with actually takes into account what each immigrant family pays, and makes and evaluation that shows having many cultures in a school is a positive impact on students and the undocumented children are class leaders, act no different than the other kids and are an asset to a school and a school district, that report will be disregarded out of hand as clearly biased and skewed in favor of liberals. It is a no win situation unless what you really want is to create an environment so hostile that no immigrant wants to come here. Then it will work wonders.
believe it or not I do not want amnesty for all undocumented people. I want a system that wasn’t designed in a time when it was a HUGE deal to make an international phone call much less travel internationally. The fact that I can get on a plane within a few hours and travel to the farthest point away from Kansas City in less than 2 days and for less than my monthly mortgage or that I could order a t-shirt from that same distant place right now on the internet and have it by Friday afternoon means we have a different world and a system that desperately needs to be updated to reflect that. I know you said that you have no interest in fixing federal law because it is their job, but the problem is that this exact kind of law is what is keeping them from doing anything. Every time there has been discussion of reform since GW Bush it has been shot down by the 100% secure borders and enforcement only crowd. That is just never going to happen. We are never going to have 100% secure borders, we are never going to deport all 11 million undocumented people. If we want to fix this problem we need to be discussing solutions not pipe dreams. This type of legislation just gets people all riled up about this issue and unable or unwilling to discuss compromise or an actual workable solution. Whatever the number is, its not going to do anything positive to help Missouri nor the larger issue of our immigration problem.
It will just keep people angry and unthinking. I want this problem to have a solution. I want there to be reform that 1. Protects our national security interests 2. Promotes and allows businesses to easily recruit the best and the brightest and most degreed and talented people from all over our world to come work for our companies in this country developing the next ipad or smart car 3. Promotes and Allows businesses that need unskilled labor that they cannot find in the US to easily recruit out of the US 4. Provides avenues for these businesses to make those workers that are contributing to our economic growth a way to become permanent residents in an reasonable amount of time. 5. Values and protects the sanctity of the family by not forcing families to wait for 10+years for visas or remain separated for 10+ years 6. Acknowledges that there are people in this country that have been here for years and years, that are not committing crimes, running businesses, raising good children, working contributing paying taxes and finding some way to allow them to obtain legal status. I want to be able to deport all the criminals and have ICE agents spending the majority of their time catching traffickers and the like. I want to have those who deserve it regulate their status and pay whatever to do so. But right now and for the past 5 years or more our only discussion has been no discussion until 100% enforcement. That is just never going to work.
If you really want to save the tax payers money the push for change not a law that is going to cost a ton and give us nothing. Again I have only discussed the school. Look at Chicago’s recent decision not to hold ICE prisoners anymore because of the millions of dollars it was costing the city.
Finally, and this is the last thing I promise, well for now, while there is a provision that it shall be unlawful to disclose this information, there is no penalty for doing so. This is a very emotional issue and this kind of information in the hands of someone who does in fact have evil intent could be very dangerous to the family, the child, the other students, other people of the same race or other immigrants in general. It would just take one slip of the tongue or misplaced statement and and we could have a disaster. The fact that Senators came in yesterday to find gun targets on their doors proves that there is violence just barely contained under the surface of many people, especially on this subject. Google news articles on immigration and read the comments. They are violent and hateful. This information will end up hurting someone and there is nothing in this law that remedies that.
I do understand wanting to protect people who are on the edge as you say, but this is not going to do that. It is going to cost money in collecting this information, putting together these reports, establishing all these criteria, housing all these people waiting for ICE, prosecuting people for not having documents (I didn’t discuss that section either, but there are some real technical problems in the wording), and in the law suits that will follow if it is passed. For what? What is actually achieved by this study? A number that is inaccurate? More resentment against immigrants? Violence as a result? Maybe they will keep the kids home then there will be the social cost of having all these uneducated kids, or unsupervised kids at home afraid to go to school. Maybe they will move out, causing business to close and jobs to be left vacant. It happened in Alabama and Georgia it will happen here. This is just not the answer.
I hope that further explains my position and maybe even opens a dialogue. I was assuming that the intent was, as I said deportation by attrition or self deportation because other states that have done the same thing have openly said as such. I did not mean to imply that it was because you hated immigrants.
I would welcome further thoughts. And, actually I am very impressed that you even answered. Thank you for taking the time to do so, even if it was an aid that answered, it is the only non canned “thank you for contacting my office” response I have gotten.
Angela L. Williams
More bad ideas based on bad assumptions from Jefferson City. This bill will not have any effect on undocumented people because those people cannot get driver’s license because they do not have the proper authorization from Immigration. This will only effect legal immigrants who are actually doing what these anti-immigrant people want, they are doing it legally. The fact is that you do not need to even know how to read to be able to be a safe driver because signs are internationally standardized for this very reason.
On that note, it is possible for someone who is illiterate to take the Missouri Driver’s exam and this would not change that provision, only that it be given exclusively in English. How does it, then, make sense that they are doing this as a matter of public safety? Being able to read and study and pass a test in French somehow makes you less safe than someone who cannot read at all? A foreign language speaker is a worse driver than someone who is illiterate?
Representatives from the Insurance industry testified against this idiotic bill as did many members of the community and heads of charitable organizations. No one testified in favor of it. The Insurance lobbyist said this would guarantee more uninsured drivers not more English Speaking Drivers. He is right because people will not stop driving. Why on earth are they wasting their time on these kind of stupid laws? Why is this even an issue? Because it is one more example of politicians using immigrants to confuse the issue of immigration reform. This time they are picking on the ones who have “done it legally, which is what they claim to want.
What is almost as disturbing to me as the blatant illogical and baseless rhetoric behind this law as well as SB590 requiring schools and cops to check immigration status is that the representatives are literally spitting in the face of a representative democracy. No one testified in favor and many against? Yes lets pass it. They do not care about their constituents nor the people of Missouri. They do not care if they cost you money or endanger your businesses or children or safety on the road. This is the 2nd vote this week that completely ignored the fact that the overwhelming majority of the comments were against the law.
Section A. Chapters 161 and 577, RSMo, are amended by adding thereto
- 2 three new sections, to be known as sections 161.245, 577.685, and 577.690, to
- 3 read as follows:
161.245. 1. At the time of enrollment of a student in a public
- 2 elementary or secondary school in this state, such school shall
- 3 determine whether the student enrolling was born outside the
- 4 jurisdiction of the United States or is the child of an alien not lawfully
- 5 present in the United States and qualifies for assignment to an English
- 6 as second language class or other remedial program.
- 7 2. When making the determination required by subsection 1 of
- 8 this section, the school shall rely upon presentation of the student’s
- 9 original birth certificate or a certified copy thereof.
- 10 3. If it is determined that the student was born outside the
- 11 jurisdiction of the United States or is the child of an alien not lawfully
- 12 present in the United States upon review of the student’s birth
- 13 certificate or where such certificate is not available for any reason, the
- 14 parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the student shall notify the
- 15 school of the actual citizenship or immigration status of the student
- 16 under federal law within thirty days of the date of the student’s
- 17 enrollment.
- 18 4. Proper notification under subsection 3 of this section shall
- 19 consist of the following:
- 20 (1) Presenting official documentation establishing the citizenship
- 21 and, in the case of an alien, the immigration status of the student, or
- 22 alternatively by submitting a notarized copy of such documentation to
- 23 a school official designated for such purpose by the school district in
- 24 which the child is enrolled; and
- 25 (2) Attestation by the parent, guardian, or legal custodian, under
- 26 penalty of perjury, that the document states the true identity of the
- 27 child. If the student or his or her parent, guardian, or legal
- 28 representative possesses no such documentation but nevertheless
- 29 maintains that the student is either a United States citizen or an alien
- 30 lawfully present in the United States, the parent, guardian, or legal
- 31 representative of the student may sign a declaration so stating, under
- 32 penalty of perjury.
- 33 5. If no such documentation or declaration is presented, the
- 34 school official shall presume for the purposes of reporting under this
- 35 section that the student is an alien unlawfully present in the United
- 36 States.
- 37 (1) Each school district in this state shall collect and compile
- 38 data as required by this section.
- 39 (2) Each school district shall submit an annual report listing all
- 40 data obtained pursuant to this section to the state board of education.
- 41 6. (1) The state board of education shall compile and submit an
- 42 annual public report to the general assembly. The report shall provide
- 43 data, aggregated by school, regarding the numbers of United States
- 44 citizens, of lawfully present aliens by immigration classification, and
- 45 of aliens believed to be unlawfully present in the United States enrolled
- 46 at all primary and secondary public schools in this state. The report
- 47 shall also provide the number of students in each category
- 48 participating in English as a second language programs enrolled at
- 49 such schools.
- 50 (2) The report shall analyze and identify the effects upon the
- 51 standard or quality of education provided to students who are citizens
- 52 of the United States residing in Missouri that may have occurred, or
- 53 are expected to occur in the future, as a consequence of the enrollment
- 54 of students who are aliens not lawfully present in the United States.
- 55 (3) The report shall analyze and itemize the fiscal costs to the
- 56 state and its political subdivisions of providing educational instruction,
- 57 computers, textbooks and other supplies, free or discounted school
- 58 meals, and extracurricular activities to students who are aliens not
- 59 lawfully present in the United States.
- 60 (4) The state board of education shall prepare and issue
- 61 objective baseline criteria for identifying and assessing the other
- 62 educational impacts on the quality of education provided to students
- 63 who are citizens of the United States, due to the enrollment of aliens
- 64 who are not lawfully present in the United States, in addition to the
- 65 statistical data on citizenship and immigration status and English as a
- 66 second language enrollment required by this section. The state board
- 67 of education may contract with reputable scholars and research
- 68 institutions to identify and validate such criteria. The state board of
- 69 education shall assess such educational impact and include such
- 70 assessments in its reports to the general assembly.
- 71 7. Public disclosure by any person of information obtained
- 72 pursuant to this section which personally identifies any student shall
- 73 be unlawful, except for purposes permitted pursuant to 8 U.S.C.
- 74 Sections 1373 and 1644. Any person intending to make a public
- 75 disclosure of information that is classified as confidential under this
- 76 section, on the ground that such disclosure constitutes a use permitted
- 77 by federal law, shall first apply to the attorney general and receive a
- 78 waiver of confidentiality from the requirements of this subsection.
- 79 8. A student whose personal identity has been negligently or
- 80 intentionally disclosed in violation of this section shall be deemed to
- 81 have suffered an invasion of the student’s right to privacy. The student
- 82 shall have a civil remedy for such violation against the agency or
- 83 person that has made the unauthorized disclosure.
- 84 9. The state board of education shall construe all provisions of
- 85 this section in conformity with federal law.
- 86 10. This section shall be enforced without regard to race,
- 87 religion, gender, ethnicity, or national origin.
577.685. 1. Upon any lawful stop, detention, or arrest made by a
- 2 state, county, or municipal law enforcement officer of this state in the
- 3 enforcement of any state law or ordinance of any political subdivision
- 4 thereof, where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien
- 5 who is unlawfully present in the United States, a reasonable attempt
- 6 shall be made, when practicable, to determine the citizenship and
- 7 immigration status of the person, except if the determination may
- 8 hinder or obstruct an investigation. Such determination shall be made
- 9 by contacting the federal government pursuant to 8 U.S.C. Section
- 10 1373(c) and relying upon any verification provided by the federal
- 11 government.
- 12 2. A law enforcement officer shall not attempt to independently
- 13 make a final determination of whether an alien is lawfully present in
- 14 the United States. A law enforcement officer may not consider race,
- 15 color, or national origin in implementing the requirements of this
- 16 section except to the extent permitted by the United States Constitution
- 17 or the Constitution of Missouri.
- 18 3. A person is presumed to not be an alien who is unlawfully
- 19 present in the United States if the person provides any of the following
- 20 to the law enforcement officer:
- 21 (1) A valid, unexpired Missouri driver’s license;
- 22 (2) A valid, unexpired Missouri nondriver’s license;
- 23 (3) A valid tribal enrollment card or other form of tribal
- 24 identification bearing a photograph or other biometric identifier;
- 25 (4) Any valid United States federal or state government issued
- 26 identification document bearing a photograph or other biometric
- 27 identifier, if issued by an entity that requires proof of lawful presence
- 28 in the United States before issuance;
- 29 (5) A foreign passport with an unexpired United States visa and
- 30 a corresponding stamp or notation by the United States Department of
- 31 Homeland Security indicating the bearer’s admission to the United
- 32 States;
- 33 (6) A foreign passport issued by a visa waiver country with the
- 34 corresponding entry stamp and unexpired duration of stay annotation
- 35 or an I-94W form by the United States Department of Homeland
- 36 Security indicating the bearer’s admission to the United States.
- 37 4. If an alien is determined by the federal government to be an
- 38 alien who is unlawfully present in the United States pursuant to 8
- 39 U.S.C. Section 1373(c), the law enforcement agency shall cooperate in
- 40 the transfer of the alien to the custody of the federal government, if the
- 41 federal government so requests.
577.690. 1. In addition to any violation of federal law, a person
- 2 is guilty of willful failure to complete or carry an alien registration
- 3 document if the person is in violation of 8 U.S.C. Section 1304(e) or 8
- 4 U.S.C. Section 1306(a), and the person is an alien unlawfully present in
- 5 the United States.
- 6 2. In the enforcement of this section, an alien’s immigration
- 7 status shall be determined by verification of the alien’s immigration
- 8 status with the federal government pursuant to 8 U.S.C. Section 1373(c).
- 9 A law enforcement officer shall not attempt to independently make a
- 10 final determination of whether an alien is lawfully present in the
- 11 United States.
- 12 3. A law enforcement official or agency of this state or a county,
- 13 city, or other political subdivision of this state may not consider race,
- 14 color, or national origin in the enforcement of this section except to the
- 15 extent permitted by the United States Constitution and the Constitution
- 16 of Missouri.
- 17 4. This section does not apply to a person who maintains
- 18 authorization from the federal government to be present in the United
- 19 States.
- 20 5. Any record that relates to the immigration status of a person
- 21 is admissible in any court of this state without further foundation or
- 22 testimony from a custodian of records if the record is certified as
- 23 authentic by the federal government agency that is responsible for
- 24 maintaining the record. A verification of an alien’s immigration status
- 25 received from the federal government pursuant to 8 U.S.C. Section
- 26 1373(c) shall constitute proof of that alien’s status. A court of this state
- 27 shall consider only the federal government’s verification in
- 28 determining whether an alien is lawfully present in the United States.
- 29 6. An alien unlawfully present in the United States who is in
- 30 violation of this section shall be guilty of a class C misdemeanor.
I sometimes don’t know why I bother because people like Will Kraus and Brian Nieves are going to do whatever they want anyways. It did not matter to the members that voted to pass this out of committee that only 1 person testified in favor of the law and 60 plus people against, with at least 15 testifying live and at least 40 more who did not get to testify live because of time but submitted written testimony.
People like Will Kraus do not represent the people; they represent themselves. They do not care that this is going to created a giant unfunded mandate on both the schools and the police that will cost untold number of dollars. They also don’t care that if it passes Missouri is guaranteed to be sued, just like all of the other states who have passed similar law. Missouri will have to spend millions of dollars defending a suit that is already being fought elsewhere.
I have been communicating with a lovely woman who is an ESL teacher in Missouri that was moved to action after reading about our strong showing in Jeff City last week to testify against SB590. While she could not take off of work to drive there she did prepare a heartfelt letter to send to Mr. Kraus from the very important point of view of a teacher working with English Language Learners (ELLs) and the chilling effect that this type of bill will have on her interaction with the students and her parents. I have gotten her permission to post the email exchange, to illustrate how Mr. Kraus, along with others that support his type of legislation are completely ignorant about our actual immigration system. Even confronted with the clear proof that the assumptions and facts that supposedly are the impetus for this law are actually wrong (not his opinion on immigration mind you but the “facts” he testified that led him to propose this law), Mr. Kraus refuses to even entertain the idea that what he has concocted in his head as the truth is in fact incorrect. What kind of leader is he that would stubbornly cling to his proposal even when it is proven that the underlying premies is as real as a unicorn. Speaking of unicorns, it would be easier to convince my 4 year old niece that they do not exist than to get a politician to admit that his research was faulty, his logic is ludicrous, his proposal was ill conceived or that after receiving new information and examining a problem based on that new information he has decided that his old idea is now not a good one.
As Mark Twain said, “you are entitled to your own opinion, not your own facts.” Mr. Kraus, just because you really really really want something to be true because it fits neatly into your paradigm does not mean it is. I am sorry. What I think bothers me the most is that he was sitting in that hearing room listing to all of those people testify. Community leaders, religious workers, heads of archdiocese, Presidents of School Boards, Former police men, Immigration Attorneys, Community Members, Teachers, Students, Principals, Heads of Organizations that deal with New Refugees, Crime Victims, Domestic Violence. He sat there and listened to some very emotional testimony and some very fact based and practical of the problems with his law. He sat there and still he responds like he does on his last email, obviously having done no further research to see if the points that the people who know way more about our immigration system than he does brought up. Not one inch has he cracked that closed mind in response to some very valid points that were presented in testimony. Of course he may not have been listening at all because he spent most of the time messing with his smart phone…plants vs. zombies can be so addictive.
It is so tired to hear this same line of “reasoning” from people like him, because it is clear that he has no interest in making a bill that is GOOD for Missouri, in light of the overwhelming number of people who are against the bill. He has chosen to remain purposeful and willfully ignorant despite all the evidence that was presented against his position. That is not the mark of an effective leader. It is not blindly proposing idiotic, costly unfunded mandates and then sticking your fingers in your ears and yelling “I’m not listening I’m not listening” when challenged. It is about researching an issue before wasting everyone’s time and money by proposing it and then listening to the pros and cons of both sides and revising your proposal according to the new information you have.
So here is the email exchange. I have left out the ESL teacher’s name at her request so she does not have problems with her district. Other than that I have not edited at all. After the exchange I will further explain why Mr. Kraus is wrong.
Original Letter from a Real Missouri ESL Teacher
Sent: Sunday, January 22, 2012 11:20 AM
To: Will Kraus
Subject: SB 590
January 23, 2012
State Senator Will Kraus
201 W. Capitol Avenue
Jefferson City, MO 65101
Dear State Senator Kraus,
Imagine being a kindergartner who doesn’t speak English well. Now, imagine the school staff and ELL (English Language Learners) teacher interrogating you and your family about your immigration status. Instead of looking forward to school, now, you are scared of the people who are there to help you. Do you know the saddest part about this scenario? It is the fact that legislators like you are happy about it because you hope it will scare ELL families out of Missouri. Not only does this show that you don’t understand what this will do to our economy and schools, but it shows you don’t care. Shame on you!
Under Title VI, all of these children have a right to a free and appropriate education. It is my job to teach them English, not be an agent for the I.N.S. Many of these children are already United States citizens, and they want nothing more than to fit in. However, you aim to separate them and make them targets of harassment. The sad thing is that you will only make those who fit a racial profile the targets. No one will ever question the blond-haired, blue-eyed ELL student that I have now, so this is just a new form of discrimination.
SB 590 proposal is based on Alabama’s law, which was shown to affect school attendance and the economy of the state. The law has already been challenged in court, and the school provisions to check immigration status have not held up. Therefore, you are proposing a law that will waste Missouri taxpayer money when it goes to court. Why not use that money for education when we are not able to fund the school formula? Is politics worth more to you than the education of Missouri’s students?
Your law proposal states that you want to know how much it costs to educate illegals or children of illegals at the expense of United States citizens. This just proves that you don’t get it. Most of these children are United States citizens because they were born here. It doesn’t matter whether their parents are legal or not. Those that are not citizens or may be illegal deserve the right to an education without harassment. As a teacher, I give my best effort to educate all of my students and treat them all the same. No matter what you decide, I refuse to enforce your racist law at the expense of terrified kindergartners.
Missouri ELL Teacher
From: “Will Kraus” <Will.Kraus@senate.mo.gov>
Subject: SB 590
Date: Mon, Jan 23, 2012 8:55 pm
You must be referring to a different bill. No part of SB 590 asks school staff to “interrogate” children and their families. Currently parents are asked for proof of residency in the district. We are only asking for proof of citizenship of every child and then asking the school to document the number of non-citizen children that attend that school. No teacher, ELL or otherwise, will be at all involved in that process.
My door is always open,
Response from Missouri ESL Teacher
Sent: Monday, January 23, 2012 9:14 PM
To: Will Kraus
Subject: Re: SB 590
Once again, you show how little you understand about how public schools and ELL programs operate. Since many parents of ELL students do not speak English well, we often have to assist in enrollment. This means that we would be forced to ask questions about their immigration status. If you believe that this would not set an antagonistic relationship with these parents and kids, then you need to do further research and talk to ELL teachers.
Mr. Kraus’ Response (Now snippy)From: Will Kraus Sent: Jan 24, 2012 10:00 AM TO: XXXXXXXXXX Subject: RE: SB590
You are right. I do not understand why it is a burden to be asked your immigration status. It is a simple fact, nothing more. You are either a citizen or not. If not, you are either documented or not. If you are documented showing that documentation is not a burden. If you are not, it is a simple answer to a simple question. Since we all agree federal law requires any child an education and since this bill prohibits any use of the information gathered other than to collect numerical data for DESE, I don’t understand why anyone would be afraid of that process.
The area undisputed is that lack of federal enforcement of current law costs Missouri taxpayers money. I don’t believe attempts to quantify that amount are at all misguided.
My door is always open,Will KrausWhy Mr. Kraus is wrong.By the way he listen to me and Immigration Attorney Stephen Blower testify about this exact thing exactly one week ago. And that testimony prompted a rather long Q & A between Mr. Blower and Sen. Brian Nieves. But then again, as I said he was messing with his smart phone most of the hearing and was, at best, mildly interested in what people were saying, so it is possible that although I was sitting less than 2 feet away from him he probably was too involved in his phone to really listen.Mr Kraus testified and apparently still believes, despite our testimony, that proving someone’s immigration status is as easy as showing a utility bill to prove you physically live in the district. He claims that this won’t cost anyone any additional money to put into action and won’t take any resources and it is as simple as plopping down a utility bill.Apparently all of us immigration lawyers, specialized immigration courts with judges who do nothing but hear these cases and trial attorneys who do nothing but these cases, the members of the Board of Immigration Appeals, all the Federal Appellate Judges across the country, the Supreme Court, all the USCIS agents and adjudicators, the service center workers, the CPB agents and ICE agents the Consular Officers all over the world, the State Department, the Justice Department, the Attorneys who work for the Justice Department working on Federal Appeals are totally missing something easy because we all spend an extraordinary amount of time and money trying to determine the immigrate status of people all over the world and within the United States and according to Will Kraus it is “a simple answer to a simple question.” We are all obviously wasting our time and everyone’s money and clearly are not as clever nor know nearly as much about our system as this state rep who has a bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration and a Minor in Military Science from Central Missouri State University.Let me propose several scenarios and lets lay legal or not legal, since it is so black and white.1. Maria, age 9 and her mom come to the US on a B1/B2 visa with an I-94 authorizing a stay of 6 months to visit Maria’s Grandparents. While here during the 6 months the Grandmother, who is an LPR, gets sick and Maria’s mom decides she needs to stay in the US longer than 6 months. Prior to the expiration of the I-94 Maria’s Mom files a form I-539 application to extend or change non immigrant status. Since the trip is lasting longer than they expected Maria’s mom decides to enroll Maria in school so she does not fall behind since there is no one in Mexico to care for Maria and it is not possible to send Maria back alone. At the time she enrolls in school her I-94 is expired, but her vis is still valid and her I-539 is pending but she only has a receipt showing it was filed. Legal or Not legal…and if legal WHAT document should she slap down on the principal’s desk to show this?2. Jana and Michael are 2 orphans from The Sudan who are in the United States in foster homes. In a fit of insanity inspired by the many children Brad and Angelina have adopted Mary and John brought Jana and Michael from The Sudan after going through the process of adopting them in The Sudan while on a Mission trip with their church last summer. They bring the kids, who were living in an orphanage sponsored by their church, on legal visa for adopted children. However once in the United States they fail to finish the process and finalize either the adoption or the Residency of the Children because they immediately begin having problems with the kids, who are completely traumatized and exhibit out of control and aggressive behavior after having to hide in a tree while their whole village was massacred by rebel forces with machetes. The hid there for days eating bugs listening to their family and friends bleed to death until they are spotted by forces several days later. The spend several year being forced to be Child Soldiers and participate in all sorts of heinous atrocities until they are rescued by some missionaries and placed in this home to rehabilitate child soldiers. Because their behavior is more than Mary and John bargained for they eventually give up their potential parental rights and turn the kids over to the state. Legal or Not Legal? And if legal what document would show this?3. Jose and his family all sneak across the Mexican US border and make their way to Lee’s Summit where they live in an apartment, work, pay taxes and do not cause any problems. There are 2 kids born in Mexico and later have 1 child born in the United States. One day, 11 years after they arrive, they are all driving in their minivan, which is properly plated and has insurance, and they are rear ended. Because it is Lee’s Summit Jose and his wife are arrested and immigration is notified. They pick up Jose and his wife issue them NTA’s give them a signature and give them a court date for 10 months in the future. They are required to attend this court date and remain in the US until the removal proceedings are completed. Similarly, both Jose and his wife qualify to present against removal called cancellation of removal. The kids are not arrested because they are minor and essentially “let go.” Legal or not legal? What type of paper would they be able to produce to show this? What about the kids? The ones from Mexico? the USC kid? How does the status of the parents factor into this equation of how much is spent to educate the US Citizen, who can, in fact, just slap a birth certificate from Missouri down for the principal to see? What if dad wins his trial and mom doesn’t? how does that change the equation? What if they both win? now what about the children who were born in Mexico? What if the parents, after winning apply for the kids, but here is no visa available for 10 years? How does that change? What if they have to appeal? What if the only “document” they have is proof of their next court date? Will the school have to recheck the documents on that date? Do the parents have to initiate this or does the school? Does the school have to keep track of the dates all these visas expire and recheck to see if they get renewed on time?4. Alek escapes her small village in africa that practices FGM and stows away on a ship bound for the US. She somehow manages to survive the journey and arrives in the US as a 16 year old with no parents. She is immediately caught by immigration, given status as a Special Juvenile Immigrant or Unaccompanied Minor, and put into one of the group homes for minors. She has a distant aunt who is finally located and takes custody of her. She is given a court date in Missouri that she attends and has her case administratively closed until she is 18. At this point…Legal or NOt legal? What document would prove it? What if she files of asylum immediately but has to wait the 120 days of processing before she has the ability to apply for a EAD, which takes 10 months to actually arrive because of mistakes by USCIS on the spelling of her name? What if she files nothing until she is notified at age 18 that she has to go back to court? What is her status?5. Jaime is a LPR and has been since he was 2 years old. Both his parents are LPR’s and he has a USC little sister. When Jaime is 12 his parent’s house burns down and his immigration documents along with all of his parent’s immigration documents are destroyed. He is totally legal, but school enrollment is coming up. How is he going to prove his status or the status of his parents? What document is going to be sufficient? What if the family immediately scrapes together the $1350 it will cost to replace all the LPR Cards. The Processing time is 3-5 months. How are they to prove their status during that time? Does the school have to keep checking? Do they get some type of pro-rated number in this equation that is going o be extrapolated from this data because they can’t prove their status for part of the year? What if over a year later they still do not have their cards because uSCIS claims they sent the card to the address of the house that burnt down, despite the fact that a different address was written on the application? What if there is a mistake on the new cards?6. Jeff is from England and is here with his family on the VWP, they decide to enroll the kids in school because Jeff is looking for a job. What document will be necessary for a child or their parents from a VWP country? Legal or Not Legal?7. Kevin comes from Romania on a J visa cultural exchange bringing his son on a J3, His J requires 2 years of foreign residency after the termination of his program. At the time Kevin enrolls his son in a Missouri School his original J will expire in 1 week. Legal or not legal? How is Kevin and his son calculated in the equation that supposedly tells how much money Missouri taxpayers are spending? Does the school have to recheck in 1 week? What if it was going o expire in 2 months? Do they need to keep track of that date? What if Kevin meets a USC girl and they get married and she applied for AOS for both Kevin and his son as well as a waiver for the 2 year residency requirement? They will not find out the results for months and well after the expiration of the Js. Legal or Not? What document is necessary? What if they later get approved how will they be calculated in the equation? What if they get denied?8. Marco was born in Germany on a Military base to a USC mom and Dad, he has a military BC and a birth abroad BC. Are the schools going to be able to recognize these forms? What if he was born in a German hospital rather than on the base? What if his parents were simply on vacation? What if Mom was German who met USC Dad while dad was stationed in Germany and Dad is killed in action before the citizenship/immigration process for mom and son are finished…is Son a USC? Son comes to the US on a VWP German Passport to live with Dad’s parents and go to school…What would prove son’s status?9. USC man adopts a child from Cuba and officially adopts him and starts the immigration process. After the child is given a birth certificate from Missouri listing adopted dad as the father but place of birth in Havana a lawyer submits some paperwork to USCIS to get him residency. The lawyer then gets disbarred and actually goes to jail for massive fraud. The family gets an LPR card, but the lawyer, prior to him going to jail, told the family that the kid is actually a USC. What is the son’s status? What document is needed to prove it?10. Harvey comes to the US on a TN visa and brings his family. The passport shows his visa is good for 5 years, but after a year of working at the company in Missouri he is fired. He does not get another job in the same industry and they continue to live in Missouri? Kids legal or no? What documents? What if he is in the process of getting a new job?11. Jack is here on an H2B and his kids and wife have the derivative visas. The visas are good for a year but Jack gets fired. Kids, Legal or not? What would prove it?12. Maria is caught trying to cross the border to be with her husband who is dying of kidney failure and needs help managing his daily dialysis. Maria is given a court date and attends all the courts. While she is here in proceedings she has a baby who is a USC. Her husband has TPS. Her court is administratively closed when she applies for derivative status and gets denied after 2 years of waiting. She is referred back to removal court while she appeals the TPS denial. By this time the kid is in School. What would the parents present to prove heir status? Is Dad legal or no? What about Maria? at some point Maria gets confused about the court date and misses it. Her and her husband receive a notice in the mail that she has been deported and needs to report to the nearest ICE office. Once she is there ICE finds out she has no passport and the closest consulate for Honduras is in Chicago and it will take weeks to get it. They give her instructions to report back monthly with progress reports. Maria Legal or no? What documents will prove this? How is she calculated into this equation? What if she hires an attorney and the attorney manages to get her deferred action based on her husband’s severe health condition? Legal or Not? What if that deferred action lasts several years? What document would she present?13. Jennifer and her daughter are both US Citizens born in the United States but are living in hiding from a very violent and abusive husband/father and they have no proof of their citizenship, no birth certificates and no passports. Legal or no? How are they going to prove it? What if they are not USCs they entered illegally and Jennifer is married to a USC who is abusive. Jennifer has filed a VAWA application for her and her daughter but has not left her husband yet. Legal or no? What documents are they going to show? What if USC abusive husband shows up at school asking to see the proof Jennifer submitted regarding her and her daughter’s immigration status. Can he get this information? Who is going to protect these records?14. Danielle is sexually assaulted by an uncle. She and her family are all undocumented, but they work with the police and the police agree to certify a U Visa. They apply but have not heard anything back. Legal or no? What do they need to show to prove it? Does the school have to see the application, including all the facts of the sexual assault? Does the school need to follow up every few months to see if the case has been approved or not?15. Janet is an LPR. Her mom and dad are also LPRs and when Janet is 2 her mom gets job in Canada. They move to Canada where they live for 7 years, periodically returning of brief vacations but living in Canada. They do not file takes during these years in Canada. Eventually mom has a stroke and dies and dad and the kids move back to the US. They are allowed back in at customs without any questions. They begin to live in Missouri at that time and continue to live there. Kids…legal or no? What about dad?16. Jose enters the US without authorization and lives here for 6 years. He meets and marries Susan a USC and resident of Lee’s Summit, they have a child. Susan applies for Jose for Residency, a process that takes almost 3 years. During that time Jose is put into removal proceedings. After over 2 yeas of going to court and processing papers with USCIS he finally has to leave for Mexico voluntarily. He later is approved for residency and returns to Lee’s Summit. During this time what is Jose’s Status? How would he prove it? What document would be necessary? How would his status figure into the equation when he has a USC spouse? How is the cost of educating the daughter going to be figured with one possibly not legal parent and one legal? What if Jose is semi legal? What if he is authorized to be present but does not have a status? How will the formula change when Jose returns as an LPR after consular processing?These are not even examples I had to make up but are actually clients of mine or my colleagues. As you can see non of these situations have an easy answer and all of them are open to interpretation as to “legal” or “Not legal” and there are many situations where the person is “not legal” but authorized to stay here. There is not a one size fits all answer. As much as Will wishes there were there just isn’t. This supposed formula also does not take into account how much the immigrant family is contributing to the local school system through taxes, person, property, income and sales. Yes undocumented people pay taxes. If Will truly wants some sort of meaningful number this is an extremely cumbersome and complicated process of presenting documents, determining status, monitoring things like expiration dates of visa, removal court dates, application statuses and ever changing immigration policy and procedures. We are talking an army of administrative staff, lawyers and actuaries to figure out the real number of even what Will Kraus would call “illegal.” Also to truly make this number meaningful you would have to assign different values to situations where there is one legal parent and one not, where the kids are legal but the parents are not and where someone changes status after the initial documents are submitted. Finally after this number is determined, to be truly accurate you would really need to take that per kid cost and subtract the amount contributed by the parents in taxes.To do what Will Kraus is proposing, to truly do it and get a number that is in the same time zone as meaningful this is what would have to happen. Anything less than that…well they law might as well say, just count up the Foreigners and their parents and divide by the per child cost of each district, legal or no it doesn’t really matter. If that is what he wants, then he really should stop trying to hide behind some lofty excuse of trying to prove to the Federal Congress that they need to do something about immigration because what he is proposing is at best an ill-conceived ridiculous waste of money and resources on our already over taxed public education system thrown together by someone who clearly has no understanding of either immigration, taxes, spending or education and at worst it is exactly what it was in Alabama, a thinly veiled scare tactic to force immigrants, legal or otherwise, out of Missouri…deportation by attrition.So do me a favor, Mr. Kraus and your supporters, if you are going to blatantly ignore the obvious problems, costs, confusion, resources and impossibility of what you are asking for after being presented with the facts, and you are going to refuse to change your opinion after you find out your original assumptions are not correct, don’t be so intellectually dishonest to continue to claim that you just don’t understand what the problem is or that this is going to save money or come up with a real or meaningful number. Say what your true intention and sentiment is behind this law: To scare immigrants out of Missouri. Deportation by attrition and screw the costs both financially and socially.
Again the Missouri House is trying to push the English only driver’s license exam, user the guise that it will protect Missouri from “illegals” obtaining Driver’s License. The fact is is that “illegals” cannot get Driver’s Licenses (since 2005) without actually committing the crimes of identify theft and document fraud because you have to have proof of your legal status in the United States. This bill will not hurt undocumented people who already cannot get licenses but would hurt 100% legal immigrants and refugees. It would also put all Missouri Driver’s at risk because it will mean that there will be more unlicensed driver’s on the street. While driver’s licenses are a privilege not a right, the fact is that in this day and age and and especially in Missouri where there is barely public transportation in Major Cities and none in smaller towns and in more rural areas, people need to drive and will drive even if it means driving without a license because their English is not good enough to pass a written multiple choice exam. Passing that exam in English does not make you a better or safer driver than passing it in any other language. Our Street signs are made so that they require a minimal amount of actual reading. Furthermore, the state provides a way for someone who is illiterate to take the exam by having someone read the questions to them. So how is someone who cannot read at all but can pass the exam through having it given orally more safe to drive than someone who studies and learns the rules of the road in their own language and passes that exam in their own language? This is a red herring. It will not keep undocumented folks from getting DL’s and will punish legal immigrants making more unlicensed drivers and probably more uninsured driver’s a a result.
There is a hearing about this bill on January 25, tomorrow, at 5:00 pm in Jefferson City on the 2 proposed bills (really the same bill, I don’t know why there are 2 different bills)HB 1147 and HB1186. The hearing is at 5:00 pm, in House Hearing Room 7 in the International Trade and Job Creation Committee. Chaired by none other than the king of bad immigration laws in Missouri, Jerry Nolte.
I am listing the home pages of all committee members so you can email or call their office if you cannot attend in person. Please take 5 minutes and do this because it is for sure the anti-immigration people are calling and e-mailing to express support. You only need to say you do not support the bills and hope the reps will not either. Easy Peasy.
“My name is ___________. I am calling to urge Representative ______ to vote against HB 1147 and 1186 that would allow Missouri Driver’s License Exams only to be given in English. This would not impact illegal immigrants in Missouri and only harm those who are legal. It will create more unlicensed and uninsured drivers and harm businesses especial in smaller towns and rural areas where there is no public transportation. ” That’s it. Of course you can add if you want but it can be as simple as that.
John McCaherty, Republican District 090, Vice Chair
Sponsors not on Committee:
Here is my article about the bad bills last year including an identical one to these proposing English Only DL tests. The bill was defeated and they are trying again. Originally published in Missouri Lawyers Weekly on February 21, 2011.
Keep reading for the test of the bills or click on the links above.
Do Missouri Law Makers Hate LEGAL Immigrants?
by Angela L. Williams
I continue to be outraged today. There are several bills that are pending in the Missouri house and senate that are taking aim at legal immigrants and proposing to turn Missouri into a state that does not welcome legal immigrants: House Bills 167, 168 & 206. House bill 167 would require that driver’s license tests be only given in English with no interpreter allowed. House Bill 168 (also see Senate bill 195) would require that all non-citizen drivers shall have a special emblem on their driver’s license designating them as non citizens, and House Bill 206 proposes that business entities or employers that hire illegal immigrants subject to a $50,000 fine.
This is why you should be outraged too. As this debate about what to do about immigration rages on and becomes more and more heated and violent, one thing that I have heard from opponent of immigration reform say, up until now at least, is that they have no problem with LEGAL immigrants. These bills fly in the face of even that notion. These bills clearly states to the entire world, “If you weren’t born here, we don’t want you in Missouri.” None of these bills addresses a real concern of security, undocumented immigrants or even road safety. I am appalled and embarrassed to be a Missourian with these kind of obviously hate driven legislation pending.
HB 167, the English only Driver’s exam test, purports to protect the safety of Missouri roads so the applicant of a Missouri Driver’s License “can demonstrate his or her ability to sufficiently understand highway traffic signs and safety warnings.” However this is so much thinly veiled nonsense. I fail to see how studying for taking and passing the test in English shows a greater understanding of the rules of the road than studying for, taking and passing the test in any other language. And a quick perusal through the study guide shows that specially shaped and colored signs using pictures and rarely a word or two designate signs and safety warnings. No one needs to be able to read full sentences in order to know how to recognize a Stop sign or a Yield Sign or a Dangerous Curve Ahead sign. Driving Signs are standardized exactly for this reason, so anyone, even someone who cannot read can understand warnings.
This is actually going to create more unlicensed drivers not more driver’s that speak English. Similarly, the Federal Government does not require that people speak English to become a Lawful Permanent Resident or to hold any of the other types of visas that are available. In order to become a US Citizen people need only pass a basic exam in English that does not rise near to the level necessary to study for and pass the Driver’s License exam. See 8 USC § 1423(a)(1) And even then if you are over a certain age and have held your green card for more than 15-20 years or have a physical or mental disability you do not have to pass the English test. See 8 USC §1423(b)(1) & (2) To me this is a thinly veiled attempt to make life for immigrants more difficult. This law is meant to exclude immigrants from driving, thus making it more difficult to obtain and maintain employment and support their families and to continue to live in Missouri. And know here I am talking about 100% legal immigrants. Since July 1, 2005 undocumented folks are already excluded from obtaining a driver’s license no matter what language they speak so this is directly aimed at those immigrants who “waited in line,” “went through the process” and “did it legally,” all phrases that the anti-reform lobby likes to throw around.
Similarly HB 168 would “Require any driver’s license, commercial driver’s license, non-driver’s license, or instruction permit issued to a noncitizen who is lawfully present in the U. S. to include a noncitizen status emblem” What does that sound like to you? In September of 1941 German Law began requiring that any Jewish person over the age of 6 must wear a badge identifying themselves as such when outside the house. The point was to mark that group of people as different and thus worthy of scorn. Is this what we have come to? I am so sad and disgusted by the mere introduction of this law that I am almost speechless. Rep Steve King’s recent introduction of a federal bill that would strip the citizenship of millions of children born of undocumented parents is frighteningly close to the Nuremburg laws stripping German born Jews of German Citizenship simply for being born into a Jewish household. This frightening nativist and extremist move to intolerance and violent rhetoric is going to lead to nothing but a human right disaster. Whereas HB 167 attempts to offer a reason of safety to justify its existence, HB 168 offers no such evidence. I can think of no reason anyone would need to know whether someone is a citizen or not. Having this special symbol automatically sets the immigrant apart. I can think of only discriminatory consequences that could come of marking noncitizens. Anytime they have to present their driver’s license there non-citizen status will be displayed and put them at the mercy whoever is looking at their license. I see no reason for either of these laws except to exclude and marginalize legal immigrants and put them in an “other” status in society. It is saying to legal immigrants that you are not welcome in Missouri and you are less than.
Finally HB 206 would impose a fine on employers for hiring someone not authorized to work in the United States is also problematic and I fear will cause employers to be leery of hiring legal immigrants for fear of this penalty. There is no definition, no indication on who will determine the legal status of the workers, what agency or entity will administer this program. The term “unauthorized alien” is not even a term that is used in the immigration laws. The fact that the author cannot even get the terminology correct shows that states have no business trying to write laws dealing with immigration. Immigration is a complex highly specialized area of law that most practitioners do exclusively. It is not an area you can dabble in and be successful. Similarly, when State legislators, who have no knowledge, experience or understanding of the complexity of Federal immigration law try their hand at writing laws pertaining to this complicated field we get dangerously ambiguous statutes that threaten the jobs of people legally authorized to work. Currently Immigration and Customs Enforcement handles workplace audits and accountability and the lengthy process that ICE goes through in determining a worker’s legal status is onerous and complex. Missouri state officials do not have the training or expertise or the authority to make a determination on someone legal status. I fear that even people authorized to work will be victimized in Missouri if this law passes because employers will fear this penalty and decide simply not to hire foreign workers.
I am so saddened by these bills and the undercurrent of hatred, intolerance and exclusion that seems to be sweeping our society. I fear if we do not take a stand against this type of blatant bigotry, violent rhetoric and unapologetic exclusionism one day we will wake to find an America we do not recognize. Sadly this problem is not going away and it appears to me that no politician, state of federal is really interested in seeing this system fixed. And why would they be, conservative politicians would lose politically charged buzz phrases guaranteed to ignite peoples anger and stop people’s independent thought and liberal politicians would actually have to take a stand on something and risk an election. In my lifetime, I have not seen another issue enrage people and cause them to lose the ability to think so completely than the issue of immigration. The solution is common sense reform that fixes what is broken rather than laws that serve no purpose except to discriminate and alienate already legal immigrants.
Section A. Section 302.173, RSMo, is repealed and one new section enacted in lieu thereof, to be known as section 302.173, to read as follows:
302.173. 1. Any applicant for a license, who does not possess a valid license issued pursuant to the laws of this state, another state, or a country which has a reciprocal agreement with the state of Missouri regarding the exchange of licenses pursuant to section 302.172 shall be examined as herein provided. Any person who has failed to renew such person’s license on or before the date of its expiration or within six months thereafter must take the complete examination. Any active member of the armed forces, their adult dependents or any active member of the peace corps may apply for a renewal license without examination of any kind, unless otherwise required by sections 302.700 to 302.780, provided the renewal application shows that the previous license had not been suspended or revoked. Any person honorably discharged from the armed forces of the United States who held a valid license prior to being inducted may apply for a renewal license within sixty days after such person’s honorable discharge without submitting to any examination of such person’s ability to safely operate a motor vehicle over the highways of this state unless otherwise required by sections 302.700 to 302.780, other than the vision test provided in section 302.175, unless the facts set out in the renewal application or record of convictions on the expiring license, or the records of the director show that there is good cause to authorize the director to require the applicant to submit to the complete examination. No applicant for a renewal license shall be required to submit to any examination of his or her ability to safely operate a motor vehicle over the highways of this state unless otherwise required by sections 302.700 to 302.780 or regulations promulgated thereunder, other than a test of the applicant’s ability to understand highway signs regulating, warning or directing traffic and the vision test provided in section 302.175, unless the facts set out in the renewal application or record of convictions on the expiring license, or the records of the director show that there is good cause to authorize the director to require the applicant to submit to the complete examination. The examination shall be made available in each county. Reasonable notice of the time and place of the examination shall be given the applicant by the person or officer designated to conduct it. The complete examination shall include a test of the applicant’s natural or corrected vision as prescribed in section 302.175, the applicant’s ability to understand highway signs regulating, warning or directing traffic, the applicant’s practical knowledge of the traffic laws of this state, and an actual demonstration of ability to exercise due care in the operation of a motor vehicle of the classification for which the license is sought. Examinations conducted under the authority of this section shall only be administered in the English language so that the applicant can demonstrate his or her ability to read the English language sufficiently to understand highway traffic signs and safety warnings. The director shall neither supply nor permit the use of foreign language interpreters in connection with the written or driving tests required under this section. When an applicant for a license has a license from a state which has requirements for issuance of a license comparable to the Missouri requirements or a license from a country which has a reciprocal agreement with the state of Missouri regarding the exchange of licenses pursuant to section 302.172 and such license has not expired more than six months prior to the date of application for the Missouri license, the director may waive the test of the applicant’s practical knowledge of the traffic laws of this state, and the requirement of actual demonstration of ability to exercise due care in the operation of a motor vehicle. If the director has reasonable grounds to believe that an applicant is suffering from some known physical or mental ailment which ordinarily would interfere with the applicant’s fitness to operate a motor vehicle safely upon the highways, the director may require that the examination include a physical or mental examination by a licensed physician of the applicant’s choice, at the applicant’s expense, to determine the fact. The director shall prescribe regulations to ensure uniformity in the examinations and in the grading thereof and shall prescribe and furnish all forms to the members of the highway patrol and to other persons authorized to conduct examinations as may be necessary to enable the officer or person to properly conduct the examination. The records of the examination shall be forwarded to the director who shall not issue any license hereunder if in the director’s opinion the applicant is not qualified to operate a motor vehicle safely upon the highways of this state.
2. Beginning July 1, 2005, when the examiner has reasonable grounds to believe that an individual has committed fraud or deception during the examination process, the license examiner shall immediately forward to the director all information relevant to any fraud or deception, including, but not limited to, a statement of the examiner’s grounds for belief that the person committed or attempted to commit fraud or deception in the written, skills, or vision examination.
3. The director of revenue shall delegate the power to conduct the examinations required for a license or permit to any member of the highway patrol or any person employed by the highway patrol. The powers delegated to any examiner may be revoked at any time by the director of revenue upon notice.
4. Notwithstanding the requirements of subsections 1 and 3 of this section, the successful completion of a motorcycle rider training course approved pursuant to sections 302.133 to 302.137 shall constitute an actual demonstration of the person’s ability to exercise due care in the operation of a motorcycle or motortricycle, and no further driving test shall be required to obtain a motorcycle or motortricycle license or endorsement.
This was proposed by this guy last year, and it looks like it is back up, would void all contracts made in a foreign country or based on the laws of foreign countries and would make them unenforceable in Missouri.