I just got this e mail from my ALCA office (Az L/S contractors assoc). It really illustrated the separation between small timers who want the illegals thrown out. And big industry that want the ones already here to get some form of amnesty. there was a thread on earlier about organizing to report the illegals and get them deported. This is why it will never work. the big money is behind the other team. There has been some promising news from our nations capital on the immigration issue and we need your help to continue to move reform forward. According to our friend Tamar Jacoby from the Manhattan Institute, the voice of business is more important than ever THIS WEEK, and I urge you all to act. Get in touch with your senators! the White House is engaging as never before to push comprehensive reform - to the point that they, rather than McCain and Kennedy, are now driving the process forward. Just how and why this happened is a long, complicated story. But the bottom line is that the WH is now working intensively behind the scenes with a small group of Republican senators, including from TX, AZ and FL. And those senators need to hear from you - need to hear how much you need reform and how the economy of your state depends on it. This next week will be critical to this process - this is when Senate Republicans will or won't come together around a vision that Kennedy and other Democrats can ultimately make their peace with. As I'm sure you can imagine, the negotiations will be sensitive. But the good news is that the closed-door Republican sessions - the senators are meeting two or three times a week, largely without staff, with Chertoff and Gutierrez - are apparently going very well. Even senators who did not vote for the bill last year are pitching in in good faith, the conversations are said to be very pragmatic and there seems to be a lot of interest in passing something - including, significantly, because all of these senators are hearing from business interests at home that it's critical for economic reasons. ACTION ITEMS: · Sign On to the attached coalition letter to be sent to Sen. John McCain and Sen. Jon Kyl. Please communicate your companys/groups willingness to join the list of signatories by the close of business Tuesday, March 20 by e-mailing Farrell Quinlan (email@example.com, 480-710-2076) or Jake Adams (firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-330-3054). Please include your name, title and company/organization name. · Contact Sen. John McCain and Sen. Jon Kyl and tell them Arizona business needs them on the side of reform. The message: the need to coalesce around a unified Republican position and get it moving. It is more important to communicate that message rather than getting into legislative details and keep our letters, calls, e-mails or visits positive and encouraging. Drive home the argument that comprehensive reform is necessary - urgently necessary - for the Arizona economy. Please forward a copy of your communication with Sens. McCain and Kyl to Farrell Quinlan (email@example.com). If you'd like more information or have questions, don't hesitate contact us or visit the AZEIR website at www.azeir.org. Farrell Quinlan Phone: 480-710-2076 E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org ++++++++++ Draft Letter Text to Follow ++++++++++ As a broad coalition of Arizona employers, we write to thank you for your continued leadership on the immigration reform issue and to encourage you to redouble your efforts with the White House and congressional leaders to craft a coherent position on comprehensive immigration reform. Arizona Employers for Immigration Reform is a coalition of Arizona businesses, chambers of commerce and trade associations that have come together to communicate the need for federal action on a variety of immigration-related issues that can only be addressed effectively at the national level. We agree that Americas immigration system is broken and needs to be fixed by Congress and the President. We see a tremendous opportunity this year to finally see such a reform pass and be signed into law. Your leadership on immigration reform has been invaluable and we want to offer you any assistance we can to help move comprehensive immigration reform forward. We applaud your work with Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff and Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez to find a resolution of immigration reform issues. It is clear that with your leadership, immigration reform is possible this year. As you know, the security situation on the Arizona/Mexico border is alarming and Congress must commit new resources to gain control of it. We believe the federal government must create an effective and secure employment verification system that provides employers with the necessary tools to ensure that our workforce is legal while instituting appropriate employer sanctions for those who flout the law. To keep our standard of living and economy expanding, we must recognize the real and growing need for more labor at every level from the highly-educated technology industries to the lower-skilled service and agricultural sectors. Finally, we urge you to include in any comprehensive immigration reform measure a just resolution of the immigration status for the estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants already working and residing in the United States. This looming problem creates burdensome stresses on our society, especially in the education, corrections and health care systems. Without a path to legal status, this growing population will remain in the shadows, susceptible to exploitation by the underground economy, and there continued existence will undermine any gains achieved through the other components of reform. Again, thank you for your constructive contribution to the debate. The Arizona business community supports your efforts and our members and others will be communicating with you over the coming weeks on this issue. We would also welcome the opportunity to discuss this with you in you Washington and state offices. Thank you for your continued service to Arizona and our country.