Hawks: Death to EB-5!

Doubling today’s EB-5 dip, Rep. Paula Hawks steps forward with more clarity on the EB-5 visa investment program than any of our incumbents. Unlike her fussy opponent, the Democratic candidate for U.S. House calls for the end of America’s green-card sale:

We only know of one reform that will work. Let the program expire September 30th so we stop wasting taxpayer money on its administration and on lawsuits over the fraudulent activity connected to this program. A program that sells American citizenship to the highest bidder and that has drug South Dakota’s good reputation through the mud should not be allowed to continue, period [Rep. Paula Hawks, press release, 2016.08.02].

Rep. Hawks uses her EB-5 attack to amplify the critique she’s leveled on Rep. Noem for abdicating her House Ag seat in favor of a purportedly better seat on House Ways and Means:

It’s interesting to hear Kristi Noem flex about her power on the Ways and Means Committee, but then consistently watch her fail South Dakota over and over again on issues like EB-5 reform. Her words don’t match her actions when it comes to reducing government waste and increasing oversight [Hawks, 2016.08.02].

This is why Kristi Noem is avoiding joint appearances with Paula Hawks: Hawks knows exactly how to explain that Noem’s words make no sense.


36 Responses to Hawks: Death to EB-5!

  1. Whoever writes this stuff should study both facts and grammar. The program does not “sell citizenship to the highest bidder.” There is no bidding. Foreigners don’t get citizenship; they get green cards – which are simply authorization to live and work in the US. The EB-5 program has not “drug South Dakota’s good reputation through the mud.” If anything, it has “dragged” not “drug.” But that’s not even true. It’s not the EB-5 program that has sullied SD’s reputation. It’s the State of South Dakota’s corrupt administration and oversight of the EB-5 program at the state level that has tarnished SD’s reputation. Had the program been run right at the state level we would not be “wasting taxpayer money on its administration and lawsuits over the fraudulent activity.” We would be making money hand over fist in fees paid by happy immigrant investors.

    I know. I know. All press releases must be written at the 8th grade level and targeted to appeal to the emotions of low information voters. The dumbing down of America continues.

  2. Roger Elgersma

    EB-5 is a prime example of why government should not be privatized. The greed and waste results from a job using taxpayer money without normal supervision is to big of a risk.
    As for joint appearances by candidates of both parties, like debates, these are needed to show the voters if either can do well debating issues in a Congress with both parties. When there are meetings of all dems or all reps we only hear each one expounding on their favorite talking points. But how do they do in the real world where they need to convince the majority of both parties to pass legislation is what I want to see and hear to know if they are capable of being part of a Congress that will not be gridlocked forever.

  3. To those who believe EB-5 and those associated with it are irredeemable, please check out the following story:

    Panic Mode: Khizr Khan Deletes Law Firm Website that Specialized in Muslim Immigration
    http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/2016/08/02/khizr-khan-deletes-law-firm-website-proving-financially-benefits-pay-play-muslim-migration/

    “A snapshot of his now deleted website, as captured by the Wayback Machine which takes snapshots archiving various websites on the Internet, shows that as a lawyer he engages in procurement of EB5 immigration visas and other “Related Immigration Services.””

  4. Michael, you do realize that link goes to Breitbart right? That website is worse than Fox News when it comes to the unverified garbage it spews.

  5. mike from iowa

    They also say Khan is not involved in hanky panky, but they smeared him anyway, which is what Breitbart does.

  6. Breitbart. Isn’t that the fake news organization that is so far up Trump’s @$$ that it wouldn’t even back up its own reporter when she got assaulted by Trump’s campaign manager?

  7. accountability is what is necessary. the feds are involved, likely revoking EB5 operation for South Dakota. The reason why must be studied and remedied. Daugaard and Rounds need to clear the decks, take responsibility, and SD needs to fully cooperate with motivated, competent investigation, and final numbers need to be tallied and restored. criminal prosecution of SDGOP fraudulent use of this process is necessary.

  8. Roger Cornelius

    Doesn’t Bosworth’s former press agent Lee Stranahan work for Breitbart?

    Attempts to disparage a Gold Star family just isn’t a wise decision.

  9. happy camper

    Yes get rid of EB5. Arcadia California is now 80% Chinese and from what I’ve read EB5 is the big reason. These super rich Chinese buy property so their kids can attend high school and college and have a place for their mistresses. We sell ourselves out for the money. America is supposed to be about the mix not just the elite. Watch the video and I’ll try to find the one with all the entitled spoiled brat sports cars.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IZs2i3Bpxx4

  10. happy camper

    Found it. Thank you EB5 for bringing these super spoiled rich kids to our country. We need them so badly.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sH8sSKwS_gU

  11. Somebody’s jealous, and maybe just a bit racist.

  12. happy camper

    Sorry made the wrong first link. This is the one on Arcadia. It has nothing to do with skin color or discrimination, but how we sell ourselves out (as I type on my super cheap Chromebook no doubt made in China that I can’t quite figure out yet). We should be caring about everyone in this country. Borders matter: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoeUxzUR4ec

  13. happy camper

    But R I don’t even believe in race, and for saying that Roger and Leslie will attack me. So fine I had to admit to some superficial differences. I just think the horrible extremes in wealth should not be embraced.

  14. Roger Cornelius

    No need to attack you happy, you’ve made your racism clear numerous times.
    However, I will reserve my right to comment.

  15. Roger, can you separate the issues of income inequality and racism? Be specific. You are a smart guy, don’t pick on Happy, please tell us all what you think.

  16. Hawks for Congress! Down with Noem! Hawks is tough,well-spoken and informed! She has the “temerity” to address the real issues affecting all South Dakotans, and we will all be the better for it!

  17. America ought not be made available to the foreign wealthy as if the Statue of Liberty were a common streetwalker.

    “Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me:
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

  18. Michael Wyland, I’ve been seeking confirmation that the Khizr Muazzam Khan who was named on that KM Khan Law Office website based in New York City is the same Khizr Khan who spoke at the DNC. The bios of the DNC’s Khizr Khan don’t mention his working in NYC.

  19. I e-mailed the address provided on that KM Khan website yesterday asking for confirmation of identity. I suspect with Breitbart and Trump excusifiers crawling all over that site, the owner has received numerous emails, more than he probably ever expected to receive on that low-traffic Go Daddy website. I have received no response.

    If DNC’s Khizr Khan is associated with EB-5, I look forward to seeing how Trump supporter MIke Rounds plays the issue of trying to smear Khizr Khan by his association with EB-5.

  20. Ror, you are correct about the technical details of the program. I’d love to hear Rep. Noem take a shot at making such an explanation.

  21. happy camper

    Roger you’ve never reserved your right to comment. I’m stickin with race is mostly a social construct and doesn’t exist. A long time back Cory argued our town’s resources was for us, so extrapolate. The irony is Cory is an elitist and believes there is that cream of the crop. He phrased it differently when talking about those who go to the urban areas to be along those like themselves (smart snobs) but it’s not much different than saying “job creators” deserving their wealth, Being contrary this country is for all of us with different talents and abilities. Stop. It’s the multinational corporations and power elite that want to create a layer on top of government.

  22. Of course, Michael’s point is to indicate that EB-5 by itself is not an evil program… although the industry it created of immigration lawyers helping applicants and entrepreneurs navigate the program for hefty fees seems a really inefficient way to inject foreign capital into rural America. Furthermore, EB-5 is irrelevant to the merits of the statements Khan made about Muslim immigrants, their loyalty to America, and Donald Trump’s un-American attitudes and policies, as well as to the merits of Trump’s response.

  23. Furthermore, Hap, I’m going to need a reminder of (1) what statements demonstrate that I’m an elitist and (2) how my alleged elitism bear on Hawks’s clear call for letting EB-5 expire.

    Perhaps I should make clear why I can agree with Hawks: on principle, letting rich people jump the immigration queue with $500K seems a poor criterion for letting people into the USA. The program has also demonstrated such capacity for corruption that it doesn’t seem worth the risk. There must be easier policies that will help worthwhile economic development projects attract investment and create jobs in rural America.

  24. happy camper

    I prefer your second paragraph much better than the first.

  25. happy camper

    Cory did you watch that video of those Chinese kids with all those fancy cars? That sort of elitism should not be for sale it’s an issue way beyond rural America. Arcadia was a middle class suburb of Los Angeles bought, torn down and largely replaced by Chinese cash. We idealize money to our own detriment.

  26. Language is the law. Whosoever speaks/writes the language of the law rules. All rulers are therefore elitist because the vast majority do not speak the language of the law. However, what the vast majority do speak of is actual fairness and true justice. So who is right? The writers or the livers?

    By the way, if anyone tells you that English is a bad college major, they are probably just trying to enslave you.

  27. Hap, that those kids are city kids emphasizes one of the problems with Senator GRassley has identified in EB-5. EB-5’s “Targeted Employment Areas” are supposed to be rural or otherwise economically disadvantaged areas where investment is needed more. TEA status cuts the required investment from $1M to $500K. Regional Centers have gerrymandered their maps to extend from rural and poor areas to include favored chunks of prime urban real estate where developers prefer to build their marquee projects, qualifying for the $500K threshold without creating any jobs out in the rural or poor areas that were supposed to be helped by TEA status.

    I think we agree that EB-5 is elitist, allowing rich people and their families to jump the queue.

  28. Happy camper has drawn you down a rabbit hole, Cory. Those rich Chinese folks in Arcadia, California are not here because of EB-5. They are here on student visas.

  29. Cursed rabbit holes! Thanks, Ror!

  30. NOem wants to abandon the Ag Committee she now sits on for the more lucrative (for her) Ways and Means. This guy, http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/files/elections/2016/by_state/KS_US_House_0802.html?SITE=AP&SECTION=POLITICS,
    just got his arse handed to him by the Ag industry in Kansas. Old Tim was the leader of the Tea Party, so this is a pretty big deal. Hawks needs to keep up the heat on EB5 corruption and why, after NOem has feathered her hubby and herself’s nest, wants to abandon AG, the biggest source of revenue in our state, for more access to big money interests. Play tough Hawks, NOem is unworthy of her job. NOem shows she has been well schooled in South Dakota corruption and knows where the big money is. Why spend your time dealing with seeds when you can cash in on a bumper crop without breaking a sweat.

  31. happy camper

    No I wouldn’t send you down any rabbit hole. You can do your own google of Arcadia EB5 and see all the attorneys who pop up and I read this in a real estate article. These are super super super rich Chinese buying their way in to our country. I’m sure the university system loves all their cash but they are buying these houses for many reasons but a major one being we give fee simple title (absolute ownership you can pass on indefinitely).

    What made me laugh in this conversation I was practically Bernie Sanders calling out the wealth divide yet I was called a jealous racist. Thank you Cory for encouraging a thicker skin cause we can take ourselves too seriously.

  32. happy camper

    After swallowing Arcadia Chinese money has moved on to El Monte it’s just pay to play if you got the money come on in. http://www.latimes.com/local/california/la-me-el-monte-chinese-20141213-story.htmlto El Monte:

  33. Wealthy Chinese don’t need the EB-5 program to buy property in the US. Anybody can buy property in the US. We should encourage people to spend money in the US so that it can circulate in our economy and create jobs and prosperity here. If they are going to spend $1 million somewhere, better here than in China.

    El Monte can use an infusion of cash. But if I were a wealthy Chinese investor I would look for property in Monrovia, which is much nicer.

  34. happy camper

    I didn’t say they need EB5 to buy real estate. They have all this cash to drop and don’t get fee simple in China. It’s said they want an escape plan should politics change and we are oh oh so willing to take their money in exchange for short term gain. What about all the low income highly hispanice that live in El Monte and call it home? Will all that Chinese cash raise all boats Mr. Republican or will they just be pushed out and down? Arcadia had nice big lots with few restrictions El Monte is similarly welcoming. Maybe zoning or politics is different in Monrovia. Arcadia was aging upper middle class respectable no doubt appealing to new money who need to show off. This is the second wave.

  35. if elite wealth wants (demand) to come in legally thru EB5 (supply), it does seem like a bad idea to have a system that auctions green cards to support needed economic development in states. isn’t Vermont an example that reliably handles the program? if states like SD can’t politically handle mining companies, and state economic development boards or cabinets or universities or Regents can’t handle fraud-free administration, that seems like a political problem.

  36. does not seem like a bad idea