|Illegals, June 2014|
"Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour's assertion that he did not personally work for the government of Mexico when his lobbying firm represented the country a decade ago is contradicted by the firm's own federal filings, which describe him as a leader of the team assigned to the account.
During an appearance Saturday at the California Republican Convention in Sacramento, Barbour denied a reporter's statement that he once "lobbied for the government of Mexico on the issue of amnesty and a path to citizenship."
|Illegals, June 2014|
In fact, the firm lobbied in support of bill that would have allowed illegal immigrants to obtain legal residency by paying a fine, instead of having to return to their home countries before applying for legal entry.
According to paperwork filed by Barbour Griffith & Rogers with the Justice Department, the firm represented the Mexican Embassy for 16 months, with Barbour listed as one of the key members on the account.
|Illegals, June 2014|
In an Aug. 15, 2001, letter to Mexican Ambassador Juan Jose Bremer confirming the agreement, Lanny Griffith, then the chief operating officer of BGandR, outlined a plan in which the lobbying firm would assist the embassy on several matters, including "immigration/human capital" and "treatment of Mexican citizens who cross the border."
Griffith told Bremer in the letter that the firm had "designated a team of professionals who will concentrate on your work."
"Haley Barbour and I will lead the BGand R team," he added. Griffith did not respond to requests for comment.
The embassy paid BGandR $35,000 a month plus expenses. In all, BG&R received $402,500 to represent the Mexican government between August 2001 and December 2002, according to the filings. Barbour was chairman of the lobbying firm until he became governor in January 2004.
In May 2002, according to Justice Department filings, the firm lobbied in support of "a bill related to Section 245(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act." That provision, first created in 1994, streamlined a path to legal residency by allowing unauthorized immigrants to legalize their status in the United States, as long as they were eligible for an immigrant visa and paid an additional fine. Previously, those seeking permanent residency were required to return to their home country to get their visas.
|Arizona border, 3/16/09|
The provision was not renewed. Since then, most Republican leaders have opposed a path to citizenship. Asked his view on allowing illegal immigrants to win legal status, Barbour demurred.
"Well, look, the first thing we have to do is we have to close the border," he said Saturday. "Once we have a closed and secure, controlled border, then you can start talking about what should we do and what shouldn't we do.""
Top three images: 6/5/14, "Leaked Images Reveal Children Warehoused in Crowded U.S. Cells, Border Patrol Overwhelmed," Breitbart Texas, Brandon Darby
"Breitbart Texas obtained internal federal government photos depicting the conditions of foreign children warehoused by authorities on U.S. soil on Wednesday night. Thousands of illegal immigrants have overrun U.S. border security and their processing centers in Texas along the U.S./Mexico border. Unaccompanied minors, including young girls under the age of 12, are making the dangerous journey from Central America and Mexico, through cartel-controlled territories, and across the porous border onto U.S. soil."...
Fourth image: 3/16/09, Trash on Arizona-Mexico border, Now Public, Rape Tree in background
Barbour said his background as a registered agent for foreign governments would be an asset if he ran for President in 2012 but didn't mention that as a registered agent of the Mexican government he lobbied to obtain legal status for illegal aliens in the US:
2/13/2011, "What Haley Barbour Didn’t Tell Fox News: He Lobbied For Mexico On “Amnesty”," Time, Michael Scherer
|Illegals, June 2014|
"I can tell you what we did when I was there. We represented Switzerland. We represented Macedonia because the Clinton administration asked us to because of what was going on in the Balkans. But I am perfectly glad to look at the clients that I worked with when I was there. But let me just make this very plain. I’m a lobbyist, a politician, and a lawyer. You know, that the trifecta. And I am willing to have my record in front of everybody."
Barbour may be eager to showcase his record, but one of Barbour’s foreign lobbying clients could cause him some troubles in the 2012 Republican primary, if he decides to run. According to a Justice Department filing by Barbour’s former lobbying firm, The Embassy of Mexico decided to retain Barbour’s services on August 15, 2001, to work on, among other things, legislation that would provide a path to citizenship for foreigners living illegally in the United States—what opponents of immigration reform call “amnesty.”
“Haley Barbour and I will lead the BGandR team,” wrote Lanny Griffith, Barbour’s former business partner, in the filing. According to subsequent filings, Barbour’s work included “building support in the legislative branch for passage of a bill related to Section 245(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.” As part of that work, Barbour’s firm arranged meetings and briefings with “Senators, members of Congress and their staffs, as well as Executive Branch Officials in the White House, National Security Council, State Department, and Immigration & Naturalization Service.”
Barbour’s firm charged Mexico $35,000 a month, plus expenses.
At the time, Mexico was seeking an extension of a provision that allowed undocumented immigrants living in the United States to receive legal visas or green cards without returning to their country of origin, provided they pay an additional fine. In practice, the provision generally helped out undocumented family members of legal immigrants or undocumented immigrants who were eligible for visas based upon certain job skills. Without the provision in place, undocumented immigrants who received legal papers had to return to their country of origin, for three or 10 years, before returning to the U.S. The Congressional Research Service estimated that an extension would benefit about 300,000 undocumented immigrants.
At the time of Barbour’s lobbying, the 245(i) effort was referred to as “mini-amnesty” in conservative circles.“This amnesty loophole allowed aliens who broke our laws to pay a $1,000 fine and go to the head of the line in front of prospective immigrants who complied with our laws,” opined Phyllis Schlafly, founder of the Eagle Forum, in a 2002 column.
Among the other supporters of extending 245(i) was President George W. Bush, who had called for an extension of the provision before meeting with then-Mexican President Vincent Fox in 2002.
The Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted out the extension, but in the post-September 11 atmosphere, the extension failed to win approval in the Senate.
The late Sen. Robert Bryd, D-WV, led the charge to sink the measure. “Reviving the 245(i) provision reopens another crack in the system through which a potential terrorist can crawl,” Bryd said, in a speech on the Senate floor on March 18, 2002. “It is lunacy—sheer lunacy—that the president would request, and the House would pass, such an amnesty at this time.”
The 245(i) provision expired in April of 2002. Since then, Barbour has maintained his support for providing a path to citizenship for those immigrants who are now living in the U.S. illegally. Last year, in an interview with the Hoover Institution, Barbour laid out a view of immigration that sounds entirely consistent with the work he did in 2001 and 2002 for Mexico.
"I don’t know where we would have been in Mississippi after Katrina if it hadn’t been with the Spanish speakers that came in to help rebuild. And there’s no doubt in my mind some of them were here illegally. Some of them were, some of them weren’t. But they came in, they looked for the work. If they hadn’t been there — if they hadn’t come and stayed for a few months or a couple years — we would be way, way, way behind where we are now. . . . A lot of it is just common sense. And common sense tell us we’re not going to take 10 or 12 or 14 million people and put them in jail and deport them. We’re not gonna do it, and we need to quit — some people need to quit acting like we are and let’s talk about real solutions."
Whether such arguments play well among the Republican primary electorate is another matter altogether.
Here’s the video of Barbour’s comments last year (video at link):...For a screen shot of one of the relevant filings, see here."
Image above from 6/5/14, "Leaked Images Reveal Children Warehoused in Crowded U.S. Cells, Border Patrol Overwhelmed," Breitbart Texas, Brandon Darby
""Results of this mismanagement are thousands of individuals living in inhumane conditions for an indeterminate period of time, as well as exhausted and overwhelmed Border Patrol agents and CBP detention facilities," Longmire continued. "The Obama administration's band-aid fix has been to ship a good portion of these immigrants — many of whom are weak, emotionally vulnerable, sick, and confused — to other sectors as far as San Diego county in California and release them with no obligation other than to show up for a hearing in 15 days.
“Most of those released will abscond and never show up for their hearings, taking their chances that ICE won't have the time or resources to go looking for them," she added. "Until they can get to where they want to go, they're overwhelming local community resources.""...