Campaign 2010

Apr 02, 2008

Barletta A Hypocrite on Illegal Immigration

In 10th District Republican Congressional Primary, Barletta's Proposal Would Fine and Close Down the Business of His Endorsed Candidate Dan Meuser and Fine Chris Hackett

Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta's much touted proposal on illegal immigration would fine and close down the business of fellow Republican congressional candidates Dan Meuser and Chris Hackett for their hiring of illegal immigrants.  Meuser and Hackett are vying for the 10th District nomination for U.S. Congress in the April 22 Pennsylvania Republican primary.  

Barletta publicly endorsed Meuser for the Republican nomination in January, 2008, despite Meuser having a business record of hiring illegal immigrants and paying a record high negotiated fine of $23,000 for breaking federal illegal immigration laws.

Barletta stated in an interview with NPR last year [NPR, 7/16/07] that his illegal immigration plan "…punishes businesses and suspends the business license of businesses that knowingly hire illegal aliens, unlawful workers."  

·        Barletta's endorsed candidate, Dan Meuser, has already been fined $41,000 by the U.S. Department of Justice and later reached a settlement of $23,000 for his family owned business (Pride Mobility, Inc.) hired illegal immigrants.  The penalty against Meuser is one of the largest fines in Pennsylvania state history for illegal immigrant hiring (www.cis.gov) 

·        This week, Chris Hackett admitted to hiring an illegal immigrant as an assistant housekeeper in his home without paying taxes or making Social Security payments on her salary.  News reports indicate that Hackett fired the worker a week ago after the situation became public but did not turn her name over to the federal government.

Barletta refuses to rescind his endorsement of Meuser despite Meuser's  contrary position on immigration and serious flouting of illegal immigration laws and his payment of major fines in violation of federal statutes.  Barletta has also failed to make any public statement on either Meuser or Hackett's breach of the law or actions in violation of his own repeated prouncements on the illegal immigration problem.  Barletta has based his campaign exclusively on an illegal immigration platform.

"Where are you, Lou?  You're always so quick to talk about immigration and your Silence is now deafening. If you really had the 'courage of your convictions' as you are constantly stating, you would  rescind your endorsement of Dan Meuser, condemn Chris Hackett, and reject their breach of your own illegal immigration stand," said Carrie James, Northeast Regional Press Secretary at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. 

James continued: "Lou Barletta is fast gaining a reputation as a grandstanding hypocrite who speaks double-talk and is using illegal immigration as an issue when it suits his needs for self-promotion. Clearly, it's empty rhetoric.”