Monday, June 12, 2006

Working for Sensenbrenner can be Cushy OR a Labor

Yesterday the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Spivak and Bice reported that aides and staffers of F. Jim Sensenbrenner have all of the luck. They reported that according to the Center for Public Integrity that those working in Sensenbrenner’s office have been the beneficiaries of over $340,000 in privately funded travel. His office ranks 12th among all other Congressional offices in this category. Working for Sensenbrenner seems to be a choice job based on this information.

Apparently Sensenbrenner must draw a distinction between his office workers and those that do manual labor for companies in which he has vested interest.

Last month I posted a copy of Sensenbrenner’s disclosure statement, which showed that he owns $100,000 in Halliburton stock. At that time I also mentioned that with all of his tough talk on immigration, he never said anything when Halliburton was busted for using illegal immigrant workers. This happened during the cleanup from Hurricane Katrina. Just last week there was a report of how badly some of these kinds of illegal immigrants were treated.

They are the backbone of post-Hurricane Katrina reconstruction: Workers who converge at dawn and wait to be picked up for 14-hour shifts of hauling debris, ripping out drywall and nailing walls.

But because many are in the country illegally, immigrant workers rebuilding New Orleans are especially vulnerable to exploitation, according to a study released Tuesday by professors at Tulane University and the University of California at Berkeley.

The illegal immigrants often work in hazardous conditions without protective gear and earn far less than their legal counterparts, the study said. Nearly one-third of the illegal immigrants interviewed by researchers reported working with harmful substances and in dangerous conditions, while 19 percent said they were not given any protective equipment.
No divesting himself from Halliburton, not even a public rebuke from the Congressman.

F. Jim Sensenbrenner is also the heir of the Kimberly-Clark fortune. Apparently the laborers that work for Sensenbrenner there don’t fare all that well either. A report over the weekend tells us that over 105 workers from the companies’ Lakeview plant have been laid off. The company is also closing a Neenah area plant that employs 165 workers.

Working for Sensenbrenner? Sounds like a cushy job. Unless you are doing manual labor for a living.

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