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Thread: Immigration, Obamacare dominate Rep. Bill Huizenga's town hall in Zeeland

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  1. #1
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    May 2006

    Immigration, Obamacare dominate Rep. Bill Huizenga's town hall in Zeeland

    By Greg Chandler | The Grand Rapids Press
    on August 14, 2013 at 7:39 AM, updated August 14, 2013 at 7:41 AM

    U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga speaks at the Grand Valley Metropolitan Council quarterly luncheon on Monday, March 11, at Calvin College. Huizenga also held a town hall meeting this week in Zeeland. (Emily Zoladz | ( file photo)

    ZEELAND, MI — Immigration reform and Obamacare dominated the discussion at a town hall meeting with Rep. Bill Huizenga on Tuesday night.

    The meeting, hosted by the Ottawa County Patriots, a local Tea Party organization, drew nearly 200 people to the Howard Miller Library and Community Center.

    Huizenga, R-Zeeland, fielded questions for nearly 90 minutes from constituents, with some of the most emotionally charged questions dealing with immigration. The congressman opposes the Senate version of an immigration bill that would change family and employment-based visa categories and provide legal status to 11 million undocumented immigrants within the U.S.

    “I don’t see how we offer (those who came to the U.S. illegally) any sort of path to citizenship,” Huizenga said. “Most of them don’t want that. They say, ‘I’ll pay the fine, send me back, but I want to be here to work.’”

    Huizenga says most undocumented immigrants are simply trying to provide a better life for themselves and their family, and that in some industries, they are needed.

    “Here’s the dirty little secret: We need them. We need them in agriculture,” he said. “There are asparagus fields that have been mowed, there are apples that have not been picked, there are cherries that are dropping off the tree. There are not enough workers out there willing to do this.”

    Lindsey Rosa, a mental health counselor who has worked with families of undocumented immigrants in the Grand Rapids area, says the current system makes it nearly impossible for anyone coming to the U.S. to do so legally. Rosa’s husband, a native of Honduras, was deported to his native country two years ago and only recently was allowed to return after being approved for a special hardship.

    “There were no legal options to come,” said Rosa, the mother of a 3-year-old daughter. “Their choices (in Honduras) are abject poverty and tremendous crime rates.”

    Huizenga, an outspoken critic of the Affordable Care Act, dubbed Obamacare, says the health care legislation is leading some businesses to make cuts to employee work hours. People who would normally work full-time jobs are having their hours cut to less than 30 per week to avoid employer-provided health care requirements.

    “That’s affecting the single moms, that’s affecting a lot of people who are depending on that income,” Huizenga said. “How do you suddenly go get another part-time job for another 10 hours?”

    The health care legislation requires companies with at least 50 employees averaging at least 30 hours per week to provide insurance. Phil Allor, owner of Selflube, a Coopersville mold and die machine shop, only has 30 employees, but says the Affordable Care Act is a huge burden for small businesses.

    “The small businesses are going to get squeezed out,” said Allor, who added some of his employees turned down company incentives because they were concerned they would lose their income eligibility for state programs such as MiChild, a statewide health insurance program that covers kids from low- and moderate-income families. “It might not be this year, it might not be next year, but it’s going to happen.”

    The U.S. House voted last month to delay both the employer mandate and individual mandate portions of the Affordable Care Act by one year, but no action has been taken in the Senate. Huizenga voted to support the delay, saying that the act is providing an unnecessary burden on business.

    “We’re trying to create an economy, an atmosphere for the private sector to go be successful,” Huizenga said. “At the end of the day, we’ve got to have people at work.”
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    May 2005
    Heart of Dixie
    “There were no legal options to come,” said Rosa, the mother of a 3-year-old daughter. “Their choices (in Honduras) are abject poverty and tremendous crime rates.”
    One of the problems is that instead of leaving the crime behind, they are bringing it with them and changing this country into what they left. They don't change the way they do business when they get here. Everything is under the table, under a fake name and they cheat and gouge for everything they can get. They view this country as the land of everything for free.
    imblest, Mayday and Ratbstard like this.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator imblest's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
    North Carolina
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

  4. #4
    Senior Member ReformUSA2012's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    Seems every illegal alien thinks they have a right to come to the US. Sorry but the US cannot fit 7 billion people into our country if the rest of the world wanted to come. Heck we can't fit even the 3 billion who would come instantly if given the chance. But all these people from other countries think we shouldn't be able to decide who we let in and who we don't feeling somehow as if they have some supreme right to come to the US. Sorry but we can't take everyone who wants, we don't have room. Thus we need to only take what we need, its our right as our own country and as such should be a model for others to follow and push for in their own country.

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