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Immigration bill: shots from the left

June 27, 2007

Re "Immigration bill ignites a grass-roots fire on the right," June 24

It was gratifying to see NumbersUSA get the credit it deserves for marshaling efforts against destructive immigration legislation, but The Times misses the mark in labeling the organization "conservative."

As a liberal, I am concerned about California's education system. How can we remedy an already overwhelmed system by bringing in additional millions of non-English speakers with low educational aspirations? I am concerned about preserving the environment. How can we argue for reducing sprawl if we are forced to build millions of houses to accommodate newcomers? I am concerned about reducing energy use and water consumption. How can we make progress toward a sustainable future while adding millions of more consumers?

NumbersUSA provides many like me a tool for rattling the senators' cages. Maybe together we can forestall the disaster they may unleash.

WANDA GOMEZ-BERGER

El Cerrito

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The so-called immigration reform bill before the Senate would be disastrous for construction workers across the nation, union and nonunion alike.

It is common practice for large contractors who do business throughout the world to move construction workers from the Philippines, Pakistan and Eastern European countries around the globe. If this immigration bill becomes law, these international contractors are planning to use the new guest worker program to drive down wages and benefits for construction workers throughout the nation.

To date, the Senate debate has not focused sufficiently on the U.S. labor market and its workers. This bill not only would destroy the economic pathway to a middle-class life for skilled union construction workers, it would ultimately drive down the living standards of all working Americans.

ROBERT L. BALGENORTH

President

State Building

Trades Council

Sacramento

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I am a lifelong Democrat with center-liberal opinions, and I am completely against the immigration bill for the same reasons conservatives are. Democrats understand that this bill would only cause additional waves of illegal aliens to come to the U.S. in hopes of cashing in on amnesty. We understand that taxpayers are subsidizing agribusiness, construction, manufacturing and many other industries by providing services to illegals so business can get cheaper labor.

Democrats need proof of border control first and enforcement of the existing laws on businesses second, and then we'll be willing to consider what to do with the millions of illegals who remain.

KIM MONSON

San Pedro

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