GOP Rep. Grimm Hired Illegals, Backed Amnesty

Neil Munro White House Correspondent
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New York GOP Rep. Mike Grimm had a secret reason for supporting the Senate’s “comprehensive immigration reform” bill — it includes a partial pardon for people who illegally hire low-wage illegals instead of tax-paying Americans.

That’s precisely what he was doing from 2007 to 2010, according to a charge sheet described today by a New York prosecutor.

The federal charges say he hired illegals for his New York health-food restaurant, paid them in cash to evade detection, hid $1 million in income and cheated on his federal and state taxes, from 2007 to 2010.

“He engaged in schemes to fraudulently under-report the wages he paid his workers — many of whom did not have legal status in the United States — and fraudulently under-report the true amount of money the restaurant earned,” says the indictment, filed April 25.

Grimm has been an outspoken supporter of “immigration reform,” earning him plaudits from the immigration-increasing America’s Voice group, and brickbats from groups seeking reduced immigration, such as Americans for Legal Immigration PAC.

Both groups cited his July 2013 statement, that “legalization [of illegals] ultimately leads to citizenship. That is the ultimate goal.”

The Senate bill would raise the inflow of immigrants and guest-workers to roughly 40 million over the next decade. That’s equal to the number of Americans who will enter the workforce in the next decade.

Nationally, the food industry is a leading advocate for an immigration amnesty, and for an increased inflow of new immigrants and guest workers. The industry, which includes farmers, food processors and restaurants, is politically influential in GOP districts, partly because many legislators are friends of local food-industry business owners.

The increased inflow of immigrants would provide the industry with more workers and more customers, says advocates.

Grimm is sometimes described in the media as a “moderate,” which usually means he’s a liberal on social issues and conservative on tax issues.

He’s voted consistently against high taxes. “I support a systemic reform to our tax code that makes it fairer, flatter, and simpler – helping to remove barriers to job creation and putting more money back in the hands of the hard-working people of Staten Island and Brooklyn,” according to his website.

He’s generally voted conservative on social issues, such as for curbs on abortion, which are supported by his mostly-white constituents. But in 2014, he supported the “Employment Non-Discrimination Act,” which would threaten employers with lawsuits when they fire gays, lesbians or people who say they’re transgender.

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Neil Munro