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Opinion

Move on immigration reform

We need to lower the volume on the political rhetoric and take a clear-eyed look at passing sensible immigration reform measures. The current system only benefits the cartels who take advantage of vulnerable and economically depressed refugees for their own reprehensible purposes.

People on the left and the right agree that a reliable guest worker program would benefit American industries while relieving some of the strain on our beleaguered U.S. Border Patrol agents, making it easier for them to combat the criminal element. Here in Washington, we’ve seen what the impact of migratory labor shortages can be: Fruit dies on the vine while harvest productivity declines. Just like our broken immigration system, this benefits no one.

We desperately need to ignore those that would make immigration reform into a political litmus test, refusing to move unless the other side meets 100 percent of their demands. Democracy requires the art of compromise. We need both sides to begin by addressing the common ground on which they can agree and moving forward from there. Waiting to address every aspect of this issue in one comprehensive bill, to which neither side will agree, only perpetuates the broken system, to the benefit of no one.

Shari Lyszkiewicz

Spokane


 

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Editorial: Washington state lawmakers scramble to keep public in the dark

State lawmakers want to create a legislative loophole in Washington’s Public Records Act. While it’s nice to see Democrats and Republicans working together for once, it’s just too bad that their agreement is that the public is the enemy. As The Spokesman-Review’s Olympia reporter Jim Camden explained Feb. 22, lawmakers could vote on a bill today responding to a court order that the people of Washington are entitled to review legislative records.