By Matt Lynch
Former State Representative
While Governor Brown in California proudly proclaims that he will declare the first “sanctuary state” most think that such crazy talk is just part of the noise from the extreme left. The sad truth is that right here in Ohio our politicians are encouraging illegal immigrants to come to your town. The result for Ohio citizens is lower wages, higher taxes, overcrowded schools, and an overwhelmed criminal justice system. All this in the name of political correctness.
• Issuing illegal workers a Driver’s License
• Subsidizing college tuition for illegal immigrants
• Paying to promote amnesty and sanctuary cities in Ohio
In 2012 there were over 100,000 illegal immigrants in Ohio costing the state almost $900 MILLION annually. You can bet that number has gone up in the last few years under the Obama administration. Even if you consider any taxes paid by illegals (many don’t pay at all) it falls far short of the cost to Ohio citizens.
The only winners are the politicians who think they are buying votes and big business which gets cheap labor. So just how did Ohio become a magnet for illegal immigrants?
In 2013 while I was in the State Legislator I was shocked to see that some states were beginning to issue a valid driver’s license to illegal immigrants. I never believed that could happen in Ohio. After all we had a Republican Governor (Kasich), a Republican Secretary of State (Husted), a Republican Attorney General (DeWine), and a Republican majority in both the Ohio House and Senate. So I was dumbfounded when Attorney General Mike Dewine sent orders to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles to issue Driver’s Licenses to illegal residents of Ohio.
An Ohio Driver’s license is the single most valuable form of ID to illegals. It helps them apply for jobs and benefits, open bank accounts, fly on planes, and dare I say it?…perhaps even vote illegally!
Back then I was so naïve I assumed it was just part of the Obama Administration forcing its policies on Ohio. So I fought back. I proposed a new Ohio law to close the loophole and stop illegals from getting a license.
I thought HB114 would easily pass and quickly be signed by Governor Kasich. I was wrong. Only five other brave Representatives would co-sponsor my Bill and after only one hearing it was killed in Committee…by the Republicans.
Politicians argue that an illegal with a driver’s license is a good thing because now he can drive to work and be productive! But meanwhile too many Ohio citizens are unemployed or worse on welfare because they cannot compete with illegals working for substandard wages. Illegal immigration is only good for politicians who want to cater to the so-called “Hispanic” vote and big business that wants to pay less for labor.
Not long after illegals in Ohio got Driver’s licenses the Ohio Board of Regents announced it was joining in to make Ohio friendly to illegal immigrants. In 2013 they decided that if you were living in Ohio, legal or not, you would be charged discounted “in-state” tuition at Ohio colleges and universities. These lower tuition rates are subsidized by taxpayers to help citizens get a college education at a reasonable cost.
No new law was passed to give away your tax dollars to pay the college education of illegal immigrants, the Board of Regents just acted on its own. Now no one would be surprised if the overpaid lifetime tenured lefties that run our universities would like the idea of giving tax dollars to help illegals, but the Ohio Board of Regents is actually appointed by the Governor! That’s right, illegals in Ohio would never get taxpayer subsidized college tuition unless the Governor wanted it! Again, silly me, I thought it was all just a mistake. A mistake I could correct by passing a law in Ohio to specifically require that only Ohio citizens benefit from “in-state” tuition.
But again, my Bill (HB254) was met with resistance from the Republican majority in the legislature (don’t forget, I AM A REPUBLICAN!). They wanted no part of it. They feared being called “mean spirited” and of course we had a Governor who was getting ready to run for President and Republicans wouldn’t do anything that might harm that ambition. So again my Bill died in Committee…. along with the best interests of Ohio taxpayers!
So strange as it may sound not only are taxpayers subsidizing the education of illegals in Ohio but if you happen to be a US citizen from Michigan or Pennsylvania and want to go to The Ohio State University go ahead and apply…. but you’ll have to pay higher tuition than if you’re from south of the border and illegally residing on Ohio!
Taxpayer Funded Hispanic Lobby
Now you might think that this crazy stuff happens because illegal immigrants have political power, and you‘d be right, but just how did they get so much power?….well it’s paid for by Ohio taxpayers!
The Ohio Hispanic Commission is part of the Ohio State government. It is funded by Ohio tax dollars to “help” Hispanics while pushing for amnesty and supporting sanctuary cities. I ought to know because I volunteered to serve on the Commission when I was in the legislature. They hated me. They knew all about my No Driver’s License Bill and No In-State Tuition Bill. In fact it was the Director of the Commission who encouraged Hispanics to help kill both Bills by attending the hearings and contacting their legislators. (of course technically they were YOUR legislators since illegals can’t vote, right?)
The Ohio Hispanic Commission is literally a lobby group with a million dollar budget fully paid for by Ohio taxpayers! They have offices and staff in the State House in Columbus (paid for by you) so they can easily access your elected officials and remind them to be politically correct and threaten them if they get out of line. If the Hispanic community wants to lobby, ok, go ahead, but why should the taxpayers pay for it! I was so appalled by this I proposed an amendment to cut their funding in the State Budget…but instead the Republicans, led by former Presidential candidate and Governor Kasich, actually increased their funding!
Make Ohio Great Again
Ohio may not be a declared “Sanctuary State” but it remains an inviting place for illegal workers to get jobs while Ohio citizens continue to flee our State for better opportunities. Things might change in Ohio if the recent Bill proposed by Representative Candice Keller and endorsed by State Treasurer Josh Mandell can get support (HB ) The Bill would outlaw sanctuary cities in Ohio and make local officials pay if illegals in their sanctuary city commit crimes. Not to be outdone the leftists in the State House have filed their own Bill to formally declare that Ohio is a sanctuary city.
It’s beginning to look like the next Governor will decide if Ohio continues to attract more and more illegal workers. As we approach the 2018 race for Governor many of the usual suspects in Columbus are lining up. The Attorney General and Secretary of State both want to move over to the Governor’s mansion. The Lieutenant Governor wants to move up as well and at least one Congressman is rumored to be considering a run for Ohio’s top job. While President Trump fights to secure our borders and protect American workers, most of the Ohio political elite continue to cater to the politically correct! If we want to Make Ohio Great Again we need someone as Governor who is a problem solver and not afraid to put Ohio citizens first…someone with a record of putting people over politics…asking potential candidates where they stand on protecting Ohio workers from illegal labor may be the best test of who should get the job!
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