Push to Expand E-Verify, Despite Criticism

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WASHINGTON -- A new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that E-Verify, the program designed to help employers check the immigration status of new hires, had reduced its data errors by 5.4 percent between the periods of 2004-2007 and fiscal year 2009. However, the GAO found that some persistent E-Verify errors can create problems for thousands of workers who are eligible to work but are falsely identified by the system as ineligible. The report was presented at the first hearing of the House Judiciary Committee's immigration panel to review the program, which is currently voluntary.

A Migration Policy Institute report released this week concludes that extending the use of the E-Verify program federally may cause more harm to U.S. workers and the economy than it would deter illegal immigration. Pro-immigrant groups have criticized the program, calling it costly, inefficient and discriminatory.