Anyone who’s heard of Donald Trump, knows that opposing immigration is the cornerstone of his platform, and the main lure for his fans. However, that doesn’t necessarily square up with his actual hiring policies.
Donald Trump owns the Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida. In the words of the club, it is “one of the most highly regarded private clubs in the world.” However, according to the New York Times, it’s also pretty exclusive to American locals trying to get hired to staff the place. Since 2010, there have been nearly 300 American applicants for various positions within the club as waiters, cooks, housekeepers, janitors etc. Yet according to federal records, only 17 have been hired. In the vast majority of vacancies, Mar-a-Lago tried to fill the jobs with guest workers from abroad. Mar-a-Lago has also pursued more than 500 visas for foreign workers since 2010.
This is a strange practice for a candidate who has made such a point of stoking anger over job loss, and promises to bring back jobs that have been snatched by illegals or outsourced. Yet there’s no shortage of people willing to do domestic work in Palm Beach. If 17 Americans are hired out of 500 positions filled, that means Trump’s operation there is employing only 3.4% American in that bracket.
Trump of course, never one to miss an opportunity, blasted Disney for doing the exact same thing. During his interview with Breitbart, Trump said that Disney should be forced to hire Americans for all those foreign-filled positions:
If I am President, I will not issue any H-1B visas to companies that replace American workers and my Department of Justice will pursue action against them.
Does this mean President Trump would pursue action against Mar-a-Lago? Will he order the DoJ to investigate.. him? Trump went further in criticizing the “H” worker visa program:
It would allow any company in America to replace any worker with cheaper foreign labor. It legalizes job theft. It gives companies the legal right to pass over Americans, displace Americans, or directly replace Americans for good-paying middle class jobs.
The H-1B program, is theoretically available for use to recruit skilled labor that might not be readily available in a given locale. Yet by Trump’s own logic, the H1-2B is the worse offender, since it is aimed filling only the most basic, bottom level labor – and is heavily used by Trump himself. Why does Trump do this? The New York Times explains:
“You almost have them as indentured servants,” said Danny Fontenot, director of the hospitality program at Palm Beach State College. “And they affect everyone else’s wages. You can make a lot of money by never having to give your employees raises.” Greg Schell, a lawyer in Palm Beach County who has helped foreign guest workers sue employers over labor violations, said companies frequently made little effort to find local employees before applying for visas. “I have seen no demonstrated need to import guest workers for the hospitality industry,” Mr. Schell said. “Employers who want to find American workers find them.”
Essentially, Trump is rampantly guilty of exploiting the H program to save a buck while hiring foreign labor and turning away Americans – despite his loud and violent rhetoric against such practices. Is Trump’s campaign promises or his past actions the more reliable record of how serious he is about cracking down on companies not hiring American?