Clinton Bans Federal Contracts for Firms That Hire Illegal Aliens: Politics Seen in Executive Order Reinforcing '86 Measure
Strobel, Warren P., The Washington Times (Washington, DC)
President Clinton yesterday signed an executive order barring companies that hire illegal immigrants from winning federal contracts.
A 10-year-old law prohibits companies from hiring illegal workers. But officials say enforcement has been spotty, and Mr. Clinton's action adds the sanction of the loss of lucrative federal business.
The president cited a number of steps his administration has taken to combat illegal immigration, including increasing the number of Border Patrol agents by 50 percent and "deporting record numbers of criminals and other deportable aliens."
"But all this will not stem the tide of illegal immigration if we do not reduce the job magnet that draws illegal immigrants to this country," he said.
Mr. Clinton's focus on illegal immigration, which he touted in last month's State of the Union address, is bound to prove popular in electoral-vote-rich California and Texas, where resentment over illegal immigration is rising.
The White House move also conforms with a growing sentiment in Congress not only to crack down on illegal immigration, but to restrict the number of immigrants who legally enter the country. The House and Senate are scheduled to take up immigration bills this month.
"As a practical matter, [the executive order] is not going to make very much difference" because most federal contractors comply with the immigration law, said Jay Krupin, who advises companies on labor and employment practices for the Washington law firm of David, Hagner, Kuney and Krupin. "I look at this being a pretty direct political move in an election year. …