Barbara Lee, Jeff Denham do immigration forums

House members near and far, and from both sides of the aisle, are holding forums to hear their constituents’ thoughts on immigration reform.

Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, will join with community leaders and activists for a forum from 6 to 7:30 p.m. tomorrow, Tuesday, March 26, at St. Elizabeth’s High School, 1530 34th Ave. in Oakland, with testimony from East Bay residents.

Lee’s office says she “been a staunch supporter of comprehensive immigration reform to address our broken immigration system” and “is committed to developing a comprehensive immigration policy that is fair, preserves family unity, promotes long-term economic growth, and includes a clear roadmap to citizenship.”

Next week and far away, Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Modesto, will hold two similar forums – one on April 2 in Modesto, and another on April 3 in Manteca. He’ll be joined by Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., who chairs the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security, at both listening sessions.

“As your Congressman, I’d like to hear from you about the critical issues facing our country and our community,” Denham said in a news release. “From creating fair and respectful immigration policies, to helping to create good paying jobs, and improving our children’s schools, we have a lot of work to do, and the answers are going to come from people like you – not the bureaucrats in Washington.”

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • RR senile columnist

    Sample testimony for Prof. Lee: She speakee fer me. I works 109 hour every week. I counted my chains to be sure. When they let me go out of factory?

  • GV Haste

    I wonder about how sincere Barbara Lee is about helping the residents of her district with jobs and a secure economic future.

    Is she gonna vote for immigration reform that allows for a steady growth in job seekers from other countries while the unemployment rate in Oakland is near 20% if you include unemployed, under employed, and those who have given up…no longer being counted.

    I have NO problem with making everyone already here legal and putting them on a path to a future citizenship.
    However thus far I see no provisions for strong effective measures to enforce the workplace after the reform is passed.
    Without carefully crafted workplace enforcement and employer penalties, the underclass of Rep. Lee’s district will find themselves once again facing a job market overwhelmed with undocumented workers fighting over the few unskilled openings.

    What does Rep. Lee say to that young man living in East Oakland with only a high school degree or less.
    Rep. Lee, are you just going to allow him to wallow in poverty for life as you bring in new replacement workers in the future, or are you actually going to put some teeth in your immigration reform plan.

    Right now I expect near zero enforcement of the workplace. Few if any penalties for employers.
    Few reasons for undocumented workers to stop coming in after the “reform” is in place.

    I also expect that 5 years from now when any enforcement is attempted that local groups will scream about “profiling” and discourage any further enforcement. Then as employer once again begin hiring undocumented workers, that lower skilled man in East Oakland will be right where he is today.
    Unemployeed, having been replaced in our economy.

    What will Barbara Lee say to him then?