Immigration Reform good for the Economy

Immigration Reform good for the Economy

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The criticism of President Obama’s executive action on the issue of immigration has little credence. It’s far too simple; Congress must take long overdue action. Bi-partisan immigration reform will nullify the President’s order. Recent studies prove that the Republicans are wrong about immigration, primarily the claim that 11 million additional legal immigrants would place a strain on the economy. Just the opposite is true; both states and the federal government would prosper from reform.

The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy issued this report: Additional revenues for states and the federal government would consist of over two billion dollars annually. The Congressional Budget Office studied a reform package passed by the Senate and estimated that revenues in the range of 450 billion dollars would be added over the next ten years.

The ultra-conservative Heritage Foundation claims just the opposite. It claims that legalizing over 11 million immigrants would cost the nation 6.3 trillion dollars over the next 50 years. They insist that large additional numbers would be added to welfare programs, and health care and education would raise expenses.  They fail to list any additional revenue generated by the increase of legal workers and do not state the fact that none of the new legal residents would be able to seek welfare assistance for 13 years.

Does the GOP have plans to counter the President’s initiative? This is what Speaker of the House John Boehner and others have told the media. This will not include some inane measures which have no value or meaning.

Boehner plans to have the House vote to fund the government through September 2015, with the exception of Homeland Security. The agency responsible for funding President Obama’s immigration directive will only receive funds to maintain its function until early next year when Republicans will control both houses. It’s politics as usual in Washington.

It remains laughable that a Congress who did nothing for six years is complaining about the President’s actions is now angry that something has been accomplished.

Republican Representative Michael McCaul of Texas, who is the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, states that ‘there is a wrong way and a right way to do things in Washington.’ Then there is the Republican way to do absolutely nothing.

Let’s get real here. Eleven million people are not going away. It is impossible to deport a number that extreme. Are they to remain in our nation as un-documented residents, continuing to work ‘under the table,’ not contributing to our tax structure, social security or Medicare? Will employers be allowed to pay less than minimum wage to workers they know are not legally in this nation? Will even the most fervent supporters of racists reverse their strategies and evolve to a level of common sense?

It is obvious that the Republican Party is fearful of millions of new voters who traditionally vote Democratic. To be totally honest, they have done nothing to contradict that fact. The GOP fails to recognize minorities. They have no plans to improve their quality of life. Actions by House Republicans continue to support their wealthy, predominately white supporters.

Time will tell, but inaction will eventually prove that a lack of change within the GOP will prove its downfall; America is quickly becoming a nation in which Caucasians will be the minority.

By James Turnage

Op-Ed

Sources:

Al Jazeera America

The Fiscal Times

US News

US News

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