Burlison Proposes Anti-Illegals Measure

Doug Burlison, a newly elected Libertarian City Councilman in Springfield, Missouri, is proposing penalties for businesses that hire illegal immigrants. Thanks to Tom Knapp for the tip on this article. Note that of the article’s four comment responses, three of them are supportive of Councilman Burlison’s proposal. Though I’m sure this will anger many open-border Libertarians.

From The Joplin Globe...

A freshman city councilman wants Missouri’s third-largest city to crack down on illegal workers by fining business that hire them and revoking the city business license of repeat offenders.

Doug Burlison, a former Libertarian Party county officer elected to the council in April, said he will bring the proposal before the council soon at the request of the local chapter of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, a national group that opposes illegal immigration.

The idea, similar to local codes pursued in more than 100 cities nationwide, got a cool reception from some quarters.

Council member John Wylie said the council has looked at similar ideas in the past and determined that only the federal government can legislate on immigration matters.

“It’s a moot point,” Wylie said. “We’re prohibited from doing this. Our immigration laws say that the feds have control of this.”

City Attorney Dan Wichmer agreed and added that current code already allows the city to pull the business license of any employer who acts illegally.

Police Chief Lynn Rowe said the department has its hands full and would need new money and manpower to take on the extra job of enforcing a city rule on illegal aliens.

Burlison’s proposal would penalize companies $500 for a first offense for hiring illegal immigrants and $1,000 for a second offense. A company guilty of a third offense would lose its city business license.

Burlison said he’s trying to “level the playing field” for businesses that don’t hire illegal immigrants.

“The ones that aren’t playing by the rules have an unfair advantage and can undercut bids because they pay these workers a lot less,” Burlison said.

9 Responses to “Burlison Proposes Anti-Illegals Measure”

  1. [email protected] Says:

    I’m pro-immigration, but this isn’t really even an immigration matter.

    Even if one supports stricter immigration controls, presumably most would agree that every businessman in Springfield should NOT be forced to turn his enterprise into a permanent substation of Immigration and Customs Enforcement at his own expense, under threat of fines and closure.

    If someone introduced an ordinance requiring every business owner to follow each of his employees to and from work to make sure they don’t break the speed limit, that ordinance would be laughed out of the meeting (well, hopefully).

    If someone introduced an ordinance requiring every business owner to accompany each employee whenever said employee visits a bank, to make sure the employee doesn’t rob it, ditto (please, tell me this is true).

    So, why should every business owner be required to make sure that each of his employees has the appropriately punched ticket from the US government vis a vis his immigration status? That’s not the business owner’s job—that’s what he pays taxes to the GOVERNMENT to do, right?

    Tom Knapp

  2. Ghoststrider Says:

    I’m surprised that this guy is a Libertarian. And besides, this isn’t a city matter anyways; the feds take care of that.

  3. Joseph Says:

    I would like to see an angry mob of real libertarians at the Springfield City Council meeting when this is introduced, if not to shout it down altogether, to at least make it clear where libertarians stand. Knapp is right - it’s more about involunintary servitude of businesses than immigration - but both crows should be shooed from the garden.

  4. tom Says:

    the article seems to say it was looked at once before and many believe it is a moot point, ergo don’t look for it to be introduced anytime soon.
    A bunck of kneejerk reactionaries

  5. tom Says:

    By the way I might suggest to this website that a little research might be in order. Our council races are party neutral therego Doug isn’t an elected libertarian council member. He is however a sitting council member that attends local libertarian meetings.

  6. Austin Cassidy Says:

    It’s clear in the article. He’s a Libertarian and a City Councilman… but the office is officially nonpartisan.

  7. globalist_elitist Says:

    I say deport this loser to France.

  8. The Libertarian Guy Says:

    Do we use a #2 pencil for the litmus test?

  9. The Libertarian Guy Says:


    Response from Councilman Burlison regarding his libertarian credentials.

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