Engineers’ group bullish on H-1B reform

Will Issa’s bill pass?

San Diego County congressmen Darrell Issa and Scott Peters introduced legislation that would raise the H-1B salary requirement.
  • San Diego County congressmen Darrell Issa and Scott Peters introduced legislation that would raise the H-1B salary requirement.

“We’re feeling pretty good about reform” of the H-1B program, says Russell Harrison, director of government relations for the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers–USA, the organization that represents American engineers.

Harrison looks forward to wholesale change of the H-1B visa program, which a large number of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics workers in the United States believe is driving down their salaries. H-1B workers from foreign countries (largely India) can stay in the U.S. for three years and can get extensions to six years. They are touted as the “best and the brightest” young engineers, whose pay is theoretically not allowed to undercut pay of American workers in the same field.

Generally, the H-1Bs are young, and thus the entire program generates “rampant age discrimination,” says Norm Matloff.

Generally, the H-1Bs are young, and thus the entire program generates “rampant age discrimination,” says Norm Matloff.

The U.S. permits 65,000 H-1Bs to enter each year, along with an additional 20,000 who have master’s degrees. Corporations lobby politicians to allow a larger number in, claiming there is a shortage of domestic engineers. Critics say it’s all a lie. The H-1Bs aren’t the best and brightest — they are mediocre engineers. Their pay is significantly lower than that of comparable American-trained engineers — a defiance of the law, say opponents. American corporations recruit H-1Bs so they can jettison higher-paid American engineers, puff up their earnings, and justify higher salaries for top management that already enjoys obscenely high pay, say critics.

“The American public gets it,” says Russell Harrison. “The H-1B companies can’t pretend that outsourcing is not a problem.”

“The American public gets it,” says Russell Harrison. “The H-1B companies can’t pretend that outsourcing is not a problem.”

Generally, the H-1Bs are young, and thus the entire program generates “rampant age discrimination,” says Norm Matloff, professor of computer science at the University of California Davis.

“The Darrell Issa [and Scott Peters] bill is a fake bill. It’s not going to do anything useful,” says Ron Hira.

“The Darrell Issa [and Scott Peters] bill is a fake bill. It’s not going to do anything useful,” says Ron Hira.

Public opinion began to turn against the H-1B program when Disney and Southern California Edison axed older workers last year and then forced them to train their H-1B replacements, who were being paid far less. Then, when the University of California San Francisco pulled the same stunt, the public really got aroused. TV’s 60 Minutes on March 19 publicized companies’ dirty pool.

During the political campaign, Donald Trump waffled on the topic, but once he was elected, he promised H-1B reform. Bills quickly went into the hopper. Senators Chuck Grassley and Dick Durbin reintroduced an H-1B reform bill they first proposed ten years ago. It would eliminate a lottery system used to choose who gets the visas and replace it with a so-called preference system giving foreigners educated in the U.S. a leg up on others. It would also give the Department of Labor enhanced authority to investigate possible abuses.

San Diego County congressmen Darrell Issa and Scott Peters introduced legislation that would raise the H-1B salary requirement to $100,000 from the current $60,000. Supposedly, this would inhibit companies from bringing in H-1Bs at low salaries. Others involved in the anti–H-1B fight, such as Harrison, say the Issa-Peters bill is not tough enough. Representative Zoe Lofgren, who serves Silicon Valley, says the Issa-Peters bill is “a fig leaf.” Her bill would boost the minimum wage for H-1Bs to $130,000.

A bill introduced by Representatives Bill Pascrell Jr., Dave Brat, Ro Khanna, and Paul Gosar, picking up on the Grassley-Durbin initiatives, would require employers to make a good-faith effort to hire American workers before reaching for H-1Bs and prohibit employers from hiring H-1Bs if 50 percent of their employees are already H-1B or L-1 (a similar program) visa holders.

“A number of bills have been introduced in both the House and the Senate,” says Harrison. “The American public gets it. The H-1B companies can’t pretend that outsourcing is not a problem. Senator Orrin Hatch [a longtime friend of big business] is the only senator I have heard recently say something nice about H-1B. Last year he was going to introduce a bill that he said would raise the number of H-1B visas. Nobody would sign on with him, and he didn’t want to do it alone. Now he says we have to do something about outsourcing — that’s a monumental shift.”

Some time ago, the anti-H-1B people zeroed in on then–Alabama senator Jeff Sessions as a lead spokesman. Sessions has opposed H-1B for a long time and vehemently spoke against it in the Senate. Now Sessions is attorney general. Many believe he convinced Trump to come out strongly against H-1B.

Ron Hira, associate professor of public policy at Howard University, researcher at the Economic Policy Institute, and coauthor of the book Outsourcing America, is a longtime foe of H-1B who is pessimistic about possible reform efforts. “A senior Democratic staffer two weeks ago on Durbin’s staff wrote a letter asking Trump to do more. Most say that the longer it goes, the less likely anything will happen,” says Hira.

He thinks the White House doesn’t have time for the H-1B issue or is suffering from internal infighting. “There is a good chance that those who make a lot of money from H-1B” will influence Trump, says Hira. “If Trump does not make this a priority, Congress will sit on its hands. This is not good news.”

Republicans Ted Cruz and Grassley, Democrats Durbin and Sherrod Brown, and independent Bernie Sanders are battling for H-1B reform. “But a lot of Republicans and Democrats benefit from the largesse coming from corporations” that love the H-1B program.

“The Darrell Issa [and Scott Peters] bill is a fake bill. It’s not going to do anything useful,” says Hira. If it passes, Congress “would declare victory, say, ‘Yes, we have reformed everything.’ Then they would take the issue off the table; that is the danger of the Issa bill.”

But Issa and his staff believe the bill could pass and stronger ones wouldn’t. An Issa spokesman told CNNMoney that the bill is “a good entry point for reform. The point of the bill is to be a modest reform on the pieces of H-1B reform that we think have the most buy-in and that we think are most achievable early in the Congress.”

What about President Trump? He is so busy with other matters, such as FBI investigations into campaign activities, rebellion in his own party, and bombing Syria, that he is not focused on H-1B. “He has been tweeting like crazy,” scoffs Hira, “but he has not tweeted on H-1B.”

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The H-1B program needs to return to its original roots: A vehicle to bring in talent which is exceptional and at the extreme right of bell curve. We have more than enough Americans who need employment to occupy the center and right of the bell curve. Regarding age discrimination, there's a fix for that too. Relieve companies of the duty to provide health insurance, and institute a single-payer healthcare system in this country. These fixes will propel the country forward unlike what is being proposed by the large corps and body shops. The need to produce short term results and pad the salaries of the C-suite is detrimental to these companies and the country as a whole.

I tend to agree that the H1-B should be focussed on bringing in exceptional talent. If that were the case I would argue that 200K would be a more appropriate salary minimum than 100K. If a company is hiring for a position which truly requires exceptional and unique talents then 200K shouldn't be an issue. But half a loaf is better than none and a 100K minimum would at least stop some of the more blatant abuse.

ImJustABill: A pay level as high as you suggest, $200,000, would attract the best and the brightest, but corporations, I am convinced, want to replace engineers working currently with H-1Bs. Objective: slice wage costs and boost profits, so CEO, COOs, and CFOs can make even more outrageous salaries. A $200,00 threshold would would drop the number of H-1Bs sharply. Best, Don Bauder

hwstar: A single-payer health plan might be an improvement, but would be very hard to implement politically. Insurance companies are reluctant to surrender what they see as a prerogative. Best, Don Bauder

JayTee: A single-payer system would cut costs. The articles you cite argue that it isn't working as well in some foreign countries as we are told in the U.S. Best, Don Bauder

don bauder Perhaps you could have mentioned that this bill from Issa and Peters, HR 170, which was introduced in January, is nothing more than a literal word for word recasting of HR 5801, which Issa introduced in July of 2016. After introduction, that bill was referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary and then was referred to the Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security...where it died. The current iteration has taken the same path and has been languishing in the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security, where undoubtedly, it will suffer the same fate as its previous incarnation.

danfogel: Ron Hira thinks the Issa/Peters bill is a phony -- so weak that even if it is adopted, the problem won't be addressed. Hira fears that Congress may pass some weak tea like the Issa/Peters bill, and then proclaim the problem fixed. Best, Don Bauder

"EEs earned a median pre-tax income of $138,285 (in 2015) including base salary, commissions, bonuses and net self-employment."

ImJustABill: Well, at least, engineers, on balance are saying fatter paychecks. Few other categories of workers can say that. Best, Don Bauder

Tim Langan: The Indian companies and blue chip American corporations have lots of money to lobby Congress -- so true. Best, Don Bauder

Shashank India: I was not aware of this problem. You can send me more about it to [email protected] Best, Don Bauder

Scott Wilson: Slow change is better than no change. Best, Don Bauder

Joel Harmon: Yes, it is disquieting that foreign trade groups are lobbying Congress to expand the H-1B program, which is robbing Americans of jobs. Best, Don Bauder

Chris Carmichael: You make a good point. The greed of companies' top managements is what is behind H-1B and the push to add more visas. Corporations can cut labor costs through H-1B, thus boosting profits and, probably, the compensation of the already-ridiculously-overpaid top managements.

Your reference to "indentured servants" also rings true. Norm Matloff of UC-Davis has been pointing out that not only do American engineers lose jobs, but the foreigners who come in on a H-1B visa are, indeed, like indentured servants. Best, Don Bauder

One way to curtail the continuing H-1B expansion would be to frame it as a security risk. The US has various restrictions on technology being sent overseas. You will see that many items sold at Amazon, for instance, are not allowed to be shipped outside the country.

So why would we let these clever foreign engineers into our country where they have access to the patented and often secret technology that goes into making these products? Surely this is a matter for Homeland Security! This is one area where the paranoia of Congressional Republicans can serve the interest of American workers.

swell: A thought, but is India -- where most of the H-1Bs come from -- an enemy? Not to my knowledge. Best, Don Bauder

Most of the employers of high numbers of Indian H-1B visa holders have massive campuses in India. Most of the jobs that Silicon Valley creates are in India these days. The technology transfers are between the campuses.

That national security angle is interesting. I have not heard about the U.S. Government utilizing H-1B's as direct hires (or contractors, unless via subcontracted work). With the exception of the State of California using H-1B's in the UC system (Janet Napolitano).

Ponzi: One could do a big investigation of those Indian companies that control H-1B activities to a great extent. They are large companies whose stocks trade on the Indian market. There was a big lawsuit in an American court against one of them several years ago. I wrote about it in at least one column and several blog items. I don't know what happened. Best, Don Bauder

American corporations risk losing the fruits of their R&D when they hire foreigners. Whether they are working on military technology or biotech or photovoltaic research or even new computer storage devices, theft of that knowledge costs America money and sometimes has more serious consequences. I'm not talking about hiring H1Bs for the Army or the CIA. Any job in America that requires advanced engineering skills also risks leaks of very important technical information. Why should we (often the taxpayer) pay for research so that other countries reap the benefit?

Right now Google (Alphabet) is suing Uber because one former employee has given top secret information to Uber. One employee has caused potentially millions of dollars damage. Every employee is a potential risk; a foreign employee is a greater risk. A risk to the employer and potentially a risk to the US. Is it worth it to save $50,000?


by Ponzi

Don, thank you for keeping the H-1B stories coming.

In this video, immigration attorneys from Cohen & Grigsby explains how they assist employers in running classified ads with the goal of NOT finding any qualified applicants, and the steps they go through to disqualify even the most qualified Americans in order to secure green cards for H-1B workers.

At time index 1:44 "Our goal is clearly not to find a qualified and interested U.S. worker."

Ponzi: Bingo! So true. Yes, greedy corporations go through several steps to disqualify American engineers so they can bring in the cheaper crowd. Best, Don Bauder

Ponzi: I watched that youtube presentation by that law firm. It borders on illegality. Everyone on this blog should watch it and pass it on to others. Best, Don Bauder

The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 defined a nonimmigrant temporary worker under the original H-1 visa, as:


by Ponzi

Beginning in 1970 and due to pressures from industry, changes were made in the foreign worker visa program that literally changed the intent of the original legislation. Congress, attempting to keep the US competitive in a growing world economy, effected changes that degraded it to the point where the current name no longer fits its true meaning.

To explain this, let’s revisit the term "nonimmigrant temporary worker."

The first casualty of political erosion was the word "temporary." Beginning in 1970 and culminating with its demise in 1990, all traces of temporary were removed. The temporary nature of the job was removed through the reinterpretation of crucial phrases. Finally, with the acknowledgment by Congress in the Immigration Act of 1990 that many nonimmigrants (as well as employers) wanted the temporary nature of their residence to become permanent, the H-1B became a "dual intent" visa. This was not missed by American employers who jumped at the chance to hire workers who would be content with lower wages than their American counterparts, as well as, be available for long term employment

The Immigration Act of 1990 permitted this "dual intent" while still maintaining its temporary impression. It also raised the total years of visa stay to six years.

As of 1990, the original (1952) definition read something like this:


by Ponzi

Ponzi: Excellent analysis of how Congress, lobbied by corporations and by India, quietly got the rules changed. Best, Don Bauder

All of the talk about H-1B reform by politicians and what does Trump do? He picked Kevin Hassett to become the chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. Hassett has been an outspoken supporter of higher immigration levels and outsourcing American jobs.

Hassett was a former economist at the American Enterprise Institute where he often wrote that America needs for more foreign workers. In his article Hassett wrote, "... If the U.S. doubled its total immigration and prioritized bringing in new workers, it could add more than half a percentage point a year to expected GDP growth.”

While suggesting that doubling immigration levels would help the U.S. economy Hassett has never addressed the effects higher immigration has on taxpayers or how outsourcing has replaced American workers.

Ponzi: Remember, Trump's positions in the campaign have, one by one, been erased. He said anything to get votes. Unfortunately, middle class people thought he was on their side. He was not and never was. He was a creature of business and Wall Street, and his appointments to key positions clearly show that. Best, Don Bauder

You are correct that he has appointed mostly big business and finance friendly candidates to several key positions.

You are wrong about him not following through on any commitments being on the middle-class's side.

He is clearly following through on his commitments to enforce immigration laws. Building prototype walls is starting soon in SD County.

He is clearly following through on making it tougher to get H1B's. Companies which hire engineers are much more reticent to hire H1B's in this environment without strong justification.

He is clearly sending a strong message to corporate America that Americans should be put first and is pressuring companies to not relocate companies off-shore, which has clearly resulted in at least some additional factory jobs in the US.

He is changing environmental rules which hurt the employment prospects of middle class workers energy producing states and the car industry.

ImJustABill: We obviously disagree on many issues. The wall will be a massive waste of money and won't thwart illegal immigration. Actually, this illegal migration has been coming down anyway. I do not know that companies have a tougher time getting H-1Bs. I did a lot of reporting for this column and never heard or read that it is getting tougher for corporations to get H-1Bs.

As to companies that decide to keep jobs here instead of sending them abroad. Most of these so-called triumphs are publicity stunts, which Carrier was to a large degree. The number of jobs saved is not impressive when you scratch below the surface.

Finally, Trump's taking apart the EPA will prove to be a disaster. Environmental protection was a hallmark of our society beginning in the 1960s, continuing through Republican and Democratic administrations. People want clean air and water. If the EPA is, essentially, torn apart, pollution will rise and so will already-ridiculous pay of top corporate managements. Best, Don Bauder

That "wall" is a foolish waste of money. The valuable jobs are not being filled by those who have to climb walls to get in, but taken by "legal" H-1B and dozens of other visas. Those who overstay their visas and blend into society and many who hire lawyers to keep them here are where the Americans lose out.

The wall is symbolic. It's good enough now because only the most desperate will walk for days in the desert heat to get around it and the eyes in the hills.

Ponzi: You are absolutely right. Great scientists and entrepreneurs will not have to resort to climbing the wall -- or entering the U.S. by sea or air. Basically, it is Trump symbolism, and the symbol is not a reassuring one. Best, Don Bauder

The wall is a no-brainer in terms of taxpayer ROI. There are at least 10 million illegal immigrants in the US ( not to mention family members ). These illegal immigrants pay practically zero in taxes (11B total according to one recent study) yet they obviously require at least some spending just to be here (infrastructure, emergency services, etc). Even if the wall only reduces illegal immigration by, say, 10%, it easily pays for itself by saving required expenditure.

ImJustABill: Many of the people who enter illegally take jobs, such as in agriculture, that are oppressive. Americans won't do them. The wall will keep some of this cheap manual labor out of our country. Expect food prices to rise if this illegal immigration is thwarted, and there is a mass deportation as Trump promises. Best, Don Bauder

Disagreeing on issues is fine.

Claiming that Trump isn't doing anything for the middle class was not true.

ImJustABill: If you look at the totality of the moves Trump has already made, and the ones he proposes, you clearly see him as an enemy of the middle class, as well as of low-income people. He gets credit for companies saying the will keep employees in the U.S. But look into those and you see a publicity stunt often times. Best, Don Bauder

I work in high tech and there is a lot of talk about how Trump has made it more difficult for H-1Bs. You are either not paying much attention or your are blinded by your obvious bias and disdain towards Trump.

ImJustABill: A reform of H-1B will have to come from Congress. Perhaps Trump has appointed some people to H-1B related jobs who are determined to destroy it. He has done that elsewhere: his head of the EPA clearly wants to get rid of it, and already the budget has been cut 30%. His head of the Department of Education is a foe of public education and just recently came out against reform of the massive (over $1 trillion) student debt. His attorney general opposes H-1B, probably more for racist reasons than anything else. Best, Don Bauder

Max von Branderburg: Agree: Issa-Peters bill is weak -- possibly a sop to corporate managements.

Partly agree: It is top management greed as well as investor greed behind this. Best, Don Bauder

You're on to something here Don. What we have in the US is a federal government disproportionately run by the investor class. Ordinary citizens can't vote in the candidates they want because the investor class controls the nominating (,_Lost)

hwstar: I have said many times, but will repeat again: in the 1950s and 1960s, corporate boards believed they had several constituencies: employees, communities, vendors, the environment, shareholders. A series of legal decisions, many coming from Delaware courts, established a new interpretation: boards have only one constituency -- shareholders. Thus, companies have one objective: run up profits by any means, fair or foul, and run up the companies' stocks. To hell with employees, communities, vendors, the environment, safety.

Greed has become inculcated in the laws corporations follow. Phony accounting-produced profits are ubiquitous, but law enforcement doesn't catch most of it, because politicians, whose palms are greased by lobbyists, cut the budgets of regulatory agencies that could expose the fake profits. Best, Don Bauder

Sol Price bucked that trend with Price Club. And Sol's philosophy was inherited and spread by Jim Sinegal.

Ponzi: Jim Sinegal took the ideas of his mentor, Sol Price, and improved on them. Eventually, Price effectively merged into Costco, which remains one of the best-managed companies in the U.S. -- certainly the best-managed in retailing. The Price crew is now serving Latin America through a different company, PriceSmart, and they appear to be doing very well.I believe Sinegal has retired, but his legacy is making Costco even better every day. Best, Don Bauder

Yes Don, I worked for Costco for five years after the merger with Price Club. I originally was with Price Club headquarters on Morena Blvd. I was one of the employees that turned off the lights before moving to Seattle. I played racquetball with Jim a couple of times. He was a very accessible person and knew almost the whole corporate staff on a first name basis.

For me, a native Southern Californian, the Seattle gloom was harsh. I left Costco and Seattle and returned to San Diego. As I get older the hot weather here is bothering. Now I enjoy when it rains in San Diego. Sometimes I regret that departure from Costco, only because it was and is one of the best companies to exist in these times.

I was employed as a senior programmer/analyst in the MIS department. The co-workers that remained (after the merger) lament that Costco now engages with outsourcing firms that use Indian software services. So, the wholesomeness of Costco is being undermined by the same greed consuming American corporate culture. When you see a firm like Costco adopting this practice, you know that it is a competitive response to a wide-spread abuse by American companies exploiting visa and other staffing techniques. Costco would have been happy to keep promoting and training from within its ranks, but the overwhelming pressure from global outsourcing has paralyzed the domestic wages and stability of American technology workers has taken one of the last great patriot American firms into the trenches of outsourcing.

While Trump builds walls and drops bombs. America, the mass of citizens that are not foreign, on visas or refugees, will rot.

Ponzi: I am sorry to hear that Costco is going in for outsourcing. Pressure from Wall Street to cut costs may be the reason. Or Sinegal retiring could be behind this: the company no longer has a conscience, perhaps. Best, Don Bauder

Don Bauder,

As a long time (20+ years) IT worker who was downsized a few years ago and "asked" to train my own replacement (Indian IT worker) as a condition of getting my severance package, I fully support raising the minimum salary to at least $150k/year + benefits (including Obamacare coverage). The funny/sad thing is that they work the Indians like virtual slaves (10 to 14 hours a day, 7 days a week) at times with no conscience. How about just making the H1B pay $150k based upon a 40 hour week, and if they want more hours, just insert coins for more work.

However, your comment about single payer health coverage is flawed from the cannot force a single payer system because you would have to FORCE doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers to work for the government. That would be unconstitutional at best. You cannot (unless during wartime) nationalize an industry. Furthermore, how can you justify forcing someone who is young and healthy to buy insurance when they do not need more than catastrophic coverage?

NCIT worker: yes, we have already discussed that the H-1Bs suffer under a system not unlike indentured servitude.

Single payer: there is no doubt there are major flaws in Obamacare. Forcing it on people is one of those flaws. But I don't see how you can cover people too poor to have healthcare now with subsidies unless citizens are forced to put up the money. I really shouldn't talk about this, because I am on Medicare. I'm sorry I raised the topic. It will take us off in another direction. Best, Don Bauder

Shashank India: The tech business is built on immigrants. Half of the residents of Silicon Valley are Asian. We should do all we can to keep the foreigners who get degrees, particularly advanced degrees, at American universities. Best, Don Bauder

This will be my last post on this blog (for a long while at least).

Mr. Bauder has written many excellent articles pointing out corruption in finance and/or the government and I thank you very much for that.

Mr. Bauder claims to support middle class issues. Don HAS done a lot to help the middle class and working class with his writing. He has written many excellent articles exposing fraud and abuse perpetrated by those in power in finance, business, or government. He supported one of the two presidential candidates (BS) who was genuinely concerned with helping working class Americans. But when there is FINALLY a president whose base of support was working class Americans Don bashes every single thing that president does - even things to help the middle class. Anything good Donald Trump does to help the middle class is just a publicity stunt to Don Bauder.

I cannot take Don Bauder seriously as an advocate for the middle class when he is so dead set on bashing a president elected primarily by working class voters. I am disappointed by the constant bashing of Trump. Moreover I am disgusted by the constant insinuations that the working class voters who supported Trump are stupid and/or morally inferior.

Thank you for all your excellent columns regarding stadium issues in San Diego. But as I say I can't take the constant Trump bashing any longer - this column has become too partisan and biassed for my tastes.

It will be a long time before I am back. I still feel Don Bauder is very a good man and a great writer who has done a lot of good but I cannot support your efforts to constanty bash the working class and the president they have chosen. I would like to reiterate my thanks to Don for the excellent articles about the Padres' and Chargers' stadium efforts.

I wish Don good luck and good health in future endeavors.

You have been the victim of one of the biggest con jobs in American history. Donald Trump cares nothing about the middle class. It was all an act to squeeze out a few extra votes, seized the WH and then stab the middle class in the back on a daily basis. Conspiring with Russian Dictator Putin, Russian Intelligence Services and the Kremlin(enemies of the US for over 70 years) to fix the 2016 elections?! Check?! Trump had 6 business bankruptcies, his credit was crap. So, Trump went to Russian Gangsters and Russian Oligarchs controlled by Putin to finance his businesses out of bankruptcy...leaving himself and the USA open to blackmail. Check. Trump also owns hotels and buildings in NYC in partnership with Chinese Communist banks. Check. Trump says one thing to get your votes and does a complete 180 on most if not all issues he talked about on the campaign(too numerous to list here)...But, don't take my word for it. Go to Politifact and Factcheck,org (Independent, Non Partisan, Award Winning Fact check organizations for some real eye openers on Trump0. Trump was voted Liar of the Year in 2016 by fact check organizations..Trump is currently under criminal investigation by the FBI and numerous US intelligence Services. Western Allied Intelligence Services have already detailed Trump's worldwide corruption and collusion with Putin and others: Mossad, MI6, German Intelligence, French Intelligence, Polish Intelligence, Estonian intelligence and much, much more. Trump is the King of Fake News and Fake Facts....Some of your posts have been good. So, it is hard to believe that you could fall for Trump hook, line and sinker. He is Madoff on a worldwide scale. Instead of "draining the swamp", Trump has made the swamp much bigger and released bigger and more predatory alligators into it. Trump will be lucky if he lasts through 2018 without getting Impeached or forced to resign. Read than numerous indictments are on the way for Trump officials, campaign officials, administration officials etc..

SportsFan0000: I agree with most, if not all, of what you say. I believe Trump is as dangerous as you indicate, although I know some intelligent people who realize he is unstable, but love his views and are sticking with him. The investigation by the FBI may come out in 6 to 8 months. If so (and there is no guarantee of that), all hell will break loose.

I understand people with very conservative views. I used to be one of them. But conservatives should have chosen Cruz, Rubio, or others (not Jeb Bush, who made an ass of himself) in the campaign, rather than selecting Trump, who has so much personal baggage. Best, Don Bauder

I have read numerous stories that multiple Grand Juries are ready to indict Trump officials on the Russia scandal. Flynn is completely toast. Others will go down also. They investigations are wide ranging and will continue after the initial indictments...Only questions remain is whether both Trump and Pence are going down also....Pence was in charge of the Transition team and vetting all candidates for Federal jobs...It appears that Pence may have known Flynn's background and what he was up to and lied about it. It is Bigger than Watergate

ImJustABill: Sorry. We will miss you. You have been a valuable contributor. This blog is dedicated to a variety of opinions on a variety of topics. We enjoy controversy. You have generated much of it, and for that I am appreciative. But if you are so dedicated to Donald Trump that you can't abide any criticism of him, then you might as well take some time off. I hope you come back soon. Best, Don Bauder

Don't Trust Issa. Issa is out for only Issa and nobody else. Everything he touches in Congress and on major issues goes to s***.

Issa started the never ending investigations of Obama, Hillary etc that wasted hundreds of millions of dollars and turned up nothing, nada, zilch. Then, Republican leadership FIRED Issa from the Investigations Committee because he was an embarrassment to the Country and the Republican Party.

San Diego has had some very terrible Congresspersons and Issa is one of them.

Trying to pass a ":watered down" HB1 Bill is just a smokescreen to confuse people and say that he did something ,finally, after how long in Congress?!

Every election cycle, Issa gets closer to losing his Congressional seat. This move/ploy by Issa is a a desperate attempt to save his own a** and job as a Congressman. Issa just retained his Congressional seat by only 2,400 votes against a political unknown/newcomer Doug Applegate. Next relection, Issa will be facing even more formidable challengers.

Can;t wait to see Issa defeated and retired!!

SportsFan0000: Issa's pre-Congress days were not too clean. I remember posting something on that. The New Yorker had done an investigation of him, and I picked part of that. Issa is no Trump -- that is for certain. But Issa has baggage, too. Best, Don Bauder

Read about Issa's brushes with the law earlier in life: alleged grand theft auto?! alleged frauds?! alleged ripplng off another guy's burglar alarm company?! Then, he buys himself a seat in Congress to "clean up his act"?!
How can San Diego be so lucky to attract guys like this?! (Sarcasm alert)..

Ponzi: In 1982, Issa was suspected of arson, but never charged. Best, Don Bauder

SportsFan0000: I wrote about that, picking up material from big New Yorker piece, several years ago. I am sure you can find it by going to the search engine. Yes, he had baggage. Best, Don Bauder

Shashank India: I agree: we should do all we can to keep the foreigners graduating from American universities on U.S. payrolls. Best, Don Bauder

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