Among the flurry of amendments Senator Lee (R-Utah) has added to the Senate's immigration reform bill is this little gem:
"Purpose: To exclude certain employment of domestic service from the prohibitions on unlawful employment of unauthorized aliens."The upshot - them illegals are fine to work as "cooks, waiters, butlers, housekeepers, governessess, maids, valets, baby sitters, janitors, laundresses, furnacemen, caretakers, handymen, gardeners, footmen [footmen? Who the fuck has footmen in the 21st century?], grooms, and chauffeurs of automobiles for family use."
More on this latest installment of the Great GOP Hispanic Outreach below the curly-kos.
Read on . . .
You would think that, particularly on the heels of the latest kerfluffle from the Heritage Foundation, Republicans - especially the ones in the "cooling saucer" of the Senate - would maybe not suggest that it would OK to keep brown people around just to trim their hedges. Alas, character is destiny. So, here they come - with Lee's amendment to specifically protect undocumented workers who work for rich people (and, more importantly, the rich people they work for).
A few years back, here in Jacksonville, we had a high-profile deportation story. The owner of a popular local restaurant, as it turned out, was in the country illegally. So, after years of building a business, providing jobs and adding to the local economy, he was facing deportation back to his native India.
In my world, he was the kind of guy that we need in this country - a guy who built something and hired people. I want people, no matter their immigration status, to start businesses, to rise to higher-paying jobs, to do increasingly better for themselves, their families and their communities.
But in the world of the Far Right, deporting a "Maker" is just fine, if the Maker in question is, you know, foreign-y. No matter what someone has done, what they've contributed, if they're "illegal" they need to go (note: this philosophy void if Rupert Murdoch's papers don't check out). Rewriting the law to help people in that situation would be "amnesty".
But, gosh, how would we get by without Roberta to take care of the kids? How would the GOP donors (and the only part of the base whose best interests truly matter to the party leadership) survive if they were potentially subject to - gasp - prosecution over having undocumented workers dusting their living rooms and making their beds?
So the GOP is reaching out to Latinos - and saying "refill my glass, would you, Ricardo?"
I don't know what the odds are that the "Romney Shouldn't Have to Sweat His Lawn Service" amendment will survive the Senate Judiciary committee. They don't seem all that good to me, as even in the Clown College that is the current Senate Minority, there are people who at least grasp how this sort of thing looks, whether they object to the principle or not. And any Democrat that gave this thing more than an incredulous guffaw should have their Donkey Card revoked.
But the fact remains that this amendment remains. This kind of thinking, this kind of tone-deaf catering to privilege with a side of overt racism, hasn't even dimmed in the GOP. If anything, it seems to be cranking up.
Are these people seriously too dumb to learn, or just to racist to care?