June 20, 2008

The Real Reason E-Verify Has Stalled (According to the Senate Communications Director)

Monique Chartier

I went to the State House tonight (yes, on one of the last nights of the 2008 session) to ask Senate Majority Leader Teresa Paiva-Weed the following questions.

Why, with twenty seven Senate sponsors, had she prevented the E-Verify bill from going to the floor for a vote? And because she did so, it is clear that she prefers that jobs in Rhode Island go to illegal aliens instead of Rhode Islanders and legal immigrants. Why is that?

I roamed the State House for a while, notebook in hand, hoping to catch her walking by. (Both chambers were in a break when I arrived at around 7:30.) I finally gave up and followed the more sensible course of going to her office, where I was told that the Senate Majority Leader was somewhere in the building but not in her office at the moment. She was quite busy as this was one of the last nights of the session but Greg Pare, Communications Director for the Senate, could speak to me ...? It was difficult to argue that this would not be a busy night for all legislators. I acceded and asked my questions of Mr. Pare. He responded as follows. (For the record, if she is desirous, I would be pleased to also post any response by the Senate Majority Leader herself to the above questions.)

> First and foremost, Mr. Pare was emphatic that Senate Majority Leader Paiva-Weed was not responsible for stopping the E-Verify bill. The chairman of the committee had asked that it be held in committee for further study.

> Secondly, the chairman had done so because the bill as originally drafted had been determined to be in violation of federal law, which forbids the assessment of monetary penalties by the state for such an infraction.

> Thirdly, the bill would have failed in committee if it had been put to a vote. It was not clear why and I should have asked Mr. Pare to clarify. But if I had opened my mouth at that point, a second round of skeptical words rather than a helpful follow-up question would have come out and I genuinely wanted to let him have his say.

> Yes, the bill could be re-worked so that it did not violate federal law. But this is one of the last days of session and it is a little late to do so.

> Yes, this bill had met exactly the same fate last session. Bills sometimes take years to become law.

> The source of the story that the Senate Majority Leader was responsible for the bill being stalled was one person who called talk radio and his word was being treated as gospel. (I took this to mean that Mr. Pare did not find either the story or the source very reliable.)

Barring any correction or amplification by the Senate Majority Leader herself, this, then, is the official history of E-Verify legislation according to the Senate.


And it looks like we have a correction by the Senate Majority Leader, though not directly from her but courtesy of the Providence Journal. WPRO's Matt Allen, on air this morning and in comments, points out a divergence between Mr. Pare's remarks to me and the Senate Majority Leader's comments to the ProJo as to the proximate cause for E-Verify being stalled :

The only one of the much-publicized plans “to get tough on immigration” — known as the E-verify bill, which requires employers to conduct background checks on the immigration status of new hires — also appeared close to death in the Senate after passing the House weeks ago. Acknowledging its likely downfall, Senate Majority Leader M. Teresa Paiva Weed said she had “concerns about the bill in the present form regarding the constitutionality, the hardships on labor, in particular the business community.”
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Sen.Paiva-Weed has previously made references to the fact that she runs high profile bills such as E-Verify by the ACLU for their approval and will not allow a bill to proceed without it.I cannot recall exactly where I heard this-it was not a statement from her directly-it was on a talk radio show.
If this is true,and I repeat-if-the ACLU has become a branch of state government.Steven Brown, a busybody who is not an attorney,haunts the halls of the Statehouse and is treated like a little king.He directs his acolyte attorneys like Amy Vitale and others to do his demented bidding.I understand his wife is an attorney,but as far as I know you can't become one by osmosis.
Steven Brown is largely responsible for the fact that Marco Riz was able to kidnap and rape a woman when he should have been in Guatemala.Why Steven Brown?Because he brings the influence of the ACLU to every discussion of illegal aliens that goes on at any level in this state.
Chief Dean Esserman and Mayor David Cicilline are likewise responsible.
They run a de facto sanctuary city.This may sound very humantarian when they trot out a seamstress with three children.But the advocates don't parade the people like Riz before the public,although they help them find cover and concealment.
The advocates have been a little quiet haven't they?Why isn't Charley Bakst lecturing us on Riz' hard childhood and his struggle for dignity?Or that snake Shana Kurland?No more demonstrations on behalf of ICE fugitives?Can't imagine why.The trouble is that while most illegal aliens are not like Riz,there are a significant number who are-and that is where the concept of "sanctuary" becomes a public menace.The predators circulate among the relatively harmless and how can we know who is who?
I don't see anything to be optimistic about regarding this issue.

Posted by: joe bernstein at June 21, 2008 12:33 AM

Let's translate in real Rhode Island terms.
Newport is a hub for the illegal alien worker. The Irish and Guatemalans work the hotels and the restaurants and the fields. The very liberal and very Marxist Senate Majority Leader Teresa Paiva Weed is doing the bidding of her local illegal alien constituency. The Senate President Mr. Joey M. is a mere shadow so spooked by the Feds looking over his shoulder he dare not raise an eyebrow on any issue so Joey M. is neutered on the E-verify issue.
The House Speaker doesn't really care one wit about the E-verify issue one way or another because there is no $$$~House Speaker D-I-N-E-R-O~$$$ to be made on the backs of illegal aliens so Master Murphy isn't going to dictate (as he could so if so moved) the passage of E-verify in the Senate.
So Paiva Weed kills the bill.
The saving grace!
One Mr. Donald Carcieri who knows the family of illegal alien Marco Riz' rape victim has a nice face to face chat with ICE officials in the V-E-R-Y near future. They discuss the 'continual blight' of illegals especially those working in Paiva Weeds district of Jamestown and Newport.
An outraged governor taking very justifiable action in a state with a 7.2% unemployment rate.
ICE dudes already very familiar with the 'island region' smile broadly as their local eyes and ears expand by huge numbers on the Islands. RIILE sets up shop in Newport for some summer sun and fun. Cameras and cellphones are locked and loaded all over the islands. lol
Just sit back and watch it happen!

Posted by: Tim at June 21, 2008 1:07 AM

That's funny... I was at the State House tonight too, but I was on the House side. After I listened to Roomful of Blues over in Waterplace Park, I went over to the State House for a few hours (and listened to a roomful of buffoons). Talk about having the life sucked out of you.

Although I regularly watch Capitol TV, it was the first time in a few years that I've actually watched a session in person. I sat in the gallery right above Rep. Amy Rice and Rep. Segal (it's very interesting that the left-wingers sit on the right side relative to the gallery). It was certainly an education, and not in a good way. I made some interesting observations and took notes. Government overthrow doesn't seem like such a bad option anymore. I'll post more about it over at (shameless plug alert) The Ocean State Republican sometime this weekend.

Don't let them even try to convince you that any committee chairmen act on their own accord. They serve at the will of the leadership and do exactly what they are told to retain their positions. They will also be made to take political heat if it serves the leadership's interests. They are bought and paid for (probably in some cases literally, but we'll let the feds sort that out). They are prostitutes taking orders from their pimps (my sincere apologies to any prostitutes for the comparison).

As for Sen. Paiva-Weed, I am very reliably informed that she will have a Republican opponent. She's going to be in for a real fight for a change and I couldn't be happier considering what she just pulled. I can't mention any further detail, as it would kind of ruin the special "surprise" element (insert cackle here). You'll hear something about it early this coming week.

While I would have preferred that the E-verify bill pass, there is a "good" byproduct ... we can use it like a club as a campaign issue, esp. against Sen. Paiva-Weed and the wimpy Senate "President" Montalbano. He sided with her against all of us and we're not going to forget it.

Posted by: Will at June 21, 2008 1:53 AM

I love that Greg Pare says one thing to Monique and we read this in the paper today:

Senate Majority Leader M. Teresa Paiva Weed said she had “concerns about the bill in the present form regarding the constitutionality, the hardships on labor, in particular the business community.”

Gotta love the straight talk coming outta the Senate.

Posted by: Matt Allen at June 21, 2008 9:00 AM

If I remember correctly, Paiva-Weed has prevented floor votes on bills relating to illegal aliens in past sessions as well, so this years' "alleged" action would no be inconsistent.

She may well have an interest in keeping the supply of illegals available to the tourist industry in Newport; but I suspect that she'd do this even were the tourist industry was in favor of the legislation.

The far-left faction of the Democrats isn't concerned with business or the economy or the average citizen, but ideology uber-alles!

Posted by: Tom W at June 21, 2008 10:47 AM

Mr. Pare should really check his FACTS before making false statements . If I'm not mistaken the person on talk radio whose word is supposedly GOSPEL was Terry Gorman from RIILE . I believe he was quoted as saying his info came directly from a Senator who personally asked the Majority Leader what chance the e-verify bill had of passing in last years session and he was told " I don't like the bill,it's too divisive and some Senators may be embarassed having to vote on it , we're not hearing it ". The Senator then asked the Senate President to intercede and he said the bill needed some amendments and it could be heard . The amendments were added and Sen. Paiva - Weed still refused to let it be heard . Back to the Sen Pres. and he said he would not interfere with the Majority Leaders decision. DEAD !!!!!!!! Fast foward to 2008 and S2091 , almost identical circumstances reported in Projo .DEAD AGAIN ??????? I'm sure Terry from RIILE would be more than willing to divulge his source if Mr. Pare was REALLY interested in knowing the TRUTH not just GOSPEL !!! Thanks to Monique for her helping to expose thes abuses .

Posted by: leprechaun at June 21, 2008 11:08 AM

That's bull because Senator Cote and Brien worked very hard to correct any concerns that the committe had. I guess now they are trying to make Senator Connors the fall guy. Make no mistake abiut it is Paiva-Weed that is the problem.

Posted by: SPECIAL K at June 21, 2008 2:51 PM

It looks like a fine time for ICE to step up it's enforcement in the Newport area.

Personally, I'd like to see ICE jackets standing around at Kennedy Plaza, Providence Place, up and down Broad Street, etc...

Posted by: Greg at June 21, 2008 2:53 PM

I am so bloody angry that I'm having a hard time forming my thoughts. While we don't have any firm proof in hand, I think we should all write to Projo and demand that they start an investigation into the dealing of Paiva Weed.

No, I don't think any of us have a smoking gun but isn't that the purpose of investigative journalism?

I'm scouting the name of those on the labor committee who supported eVerify except one person, Revens.

Isn't his wife Susan with the Superior Court?

Sen. Marc Cote was played like an accordion. He had the right legal stuff given to him by an immigration lawyer in another state. The bill was solid.

Posted by: Roland at June 21, 2008 3:25 PM

Hopefully someone will step up to the plate and primary the "good" senator.

That is the ONLY way things will change.

Any takers in her district?

You have until Wednesday at 4Pm to take action.

Deeds, Not Words!

Posted by: Aldo at June 21, 2008 8:40 PM

Yippee!!! I was watching Capitol TV and Rep. Brien really stepped up to the plate. He told his family that he'd be home shortly, thanked Mr. Speaker and then warned that he was going to pre-file eVerify and get signatures before the next session. Not 100% if he said next session or before they left today. Pretty sure it was before the next session in six months.

Send Rep. Brien and Sen. Marc Cote a note of generous thanks.


Posted by: Roland at June 21, 2008 9:41 PM

Pavia-Weed is answering to the business owners in Newport. I think that is the main reason, but because she is a socialist, she doesn't mind. She killed it this year, she killed last year, and she'll kill it next year...unless we get her de-throned. Joey is worried about his own neck and Murphy apparently doesn't have the cuhuna's to go against the buck-tooth wonder. If there is a Repub candidate for her district, he/she can count on my help!!

Posted by: DonnaC at June 21, 2008 10:15 PM

So, is someone going to fire off a letter to the Projo and Newport Daily News concerning Paiva - Weed role in this debacle?

Deeds, Not Words!

Posted by: Aldo at June 22, 2008 1:04 PM

There will be a very good Republican candidate. With the legislative session just ending with a thud, the timing will be most advantageous.

However, if some Democrats would like to create a primary nightmare for Sen. Paiva-Weed, of course, I think we'd all be amenable to that!

Remember, if you want to run for office, the filing period is this Monday through Wednesday!

Posted by: Will at June 22, 2008 1:49 PM

So, who is the dark horse to run against Paiva Weed in Newport?

C'mon, two more days!

Posted by: Roland at June 23, 2008 9:31 AM

With all the vilification of Paiva-Weed, why don't we have similar talk of a GOP challenge to Montalbano?
Ooops, he's socially conservative, therefore he gets a pass.

Posted by: rhody at June 23, 2008 3:02 PM

They ALL need to go...Joey, Weed, Fox and Murphy! A group is only as good as it's leadershp.

Posted by: Donna C at June 23, 2008 5:02 PM

There is a lesson here for Rep. Brien and Sen. Cote.

Stop trying to get things done by accomodating the "leadership", along with the usual GA politics.

If you believe in something, get out and fight like hell for it in the Public and start naming names in terms of who's creating road blocks.

Granted, we are cursed with an apathetic public, but if Brien & Cote get out and LEAD on an issue, the Public will get behind them and put enourmous pressure on those that are creating the road-blocks (e.g. Montalbano, Paiva-Weed, etc.)

Very simply, it's time to take the gloves off and it's time to stop kidding yourself that something is going to get done because someone in the "leadership" said it would during a discussion at a cocktail party.

Posted by: George Elbow at June 23, 2008 7:28 PM


You nailed it and Donna Perry is not a lightweight. She comes with clout.

Read here in Projo.


Posted by: Roland at June 24, 2008 2:39 PM

She has clout, all right. A brother who's the loudest voice on Rhode Island talk radio who will be pimping her campaign mercilessly.

Posted by: rhody at June 25, 2008 12:36 AM

Senator Paiva-Weed has hijacked our state government for her own ends and the other senators have allowed it. Rhode Islanders must act. 1.) Email your senator and demand a vote on legislation requiring Everify (note that I'm not even asking that it passes. Simply allow a vote). Inform your senator that if this doesn't happen by November you will vote out the incumbent. Further demand from democratic senators that they remove Paiva-Weed from her Majority leader position. 2.) Residents in Newport vote for her republican challengers. 3.) Email your town councils and mayors. Demand that your local law enforcement utilize the ICE database and resources to their fullest extent.

Posted by: remarks at June 25, 2008 10:07 AM