There are many believers that immigration reform allows illegal immigrants and undocumented workers to gain citizenship to easily, become part of the legal workforce to easily, and in too large of numbers. Jeff Sessions of USA Today argues that while cheap labor is good, it goes against loyalty to already American citizens. He sees this as a social issue that is too lenient in favoring immigrants over citizens that have been in this country (and unemployed for years). Sessions mentions that the rise in unskilled immigrant workers being able to work legally in the United States, with so many of them in a short amount of time, is costly to our economy and working America. When a company is not attracting workers they raise wages; so with so many immigrants coming in to work low wage jobs, unemployment will still rise, wages will drop, this will soon effect taxpayers in the long run, and immigrants will take jobs that were previously made for already unemployed Americans, most without high school diplomas, to start filling up.
Loyalty to American citizens is an important aspect that Congress needs to keep in mind with immigration reform.
But reforms for immigrants do not have that many negative effects like Sessions describes. Immigrants actually, if anything, have positive effects on lesser skilled Americans and wages. Immigrants often do not compete with American workers but instead complement them. They too are spending money to help stimulate the economy, create business demand, and even are becoming entrepreneurs who hire American citizens creating even more jobs for them. By legalizing workers, they are able to make more money, meaning they pay more taxes and have more money to stimulate into the economy. Providing legal status for that many immigrants to work exponentially raises how many jobs will be created, the rise of wages, and the rise of the overall GDP.
(chart found on http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/01/immigration-and-entrepreneurship/?_r=0)
Sessions, J. Sessions: Immigration plan bad for U.S. workers. USA Today. (2013). Retrieved http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/09/04/jeff-session-immigration-reform/2759519/
Immigration supporters gather during a rally for citizenship on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 10, 2013.
“To fully understand why American workers are harmed, one must first consider the role of immigration enforcement in the workplace and how it affects the employment rights of immigrant workers.” This Center for American Progress article evaluates the effects of the immigration reform on the workplace in the nation.
Senator Rand Paul explains how its true that border security can increase synonymously to the increase of legal citizenship from immigrants. Border security is on the rise and becoming safer than before and the pathway to citizenship is becoming easier for immigrants to follow and become legal in the U.S.
This article in The Washington Post addressed different aspects of border control between the U.S. and Mexico. Not all aspects are positive, such as homicide and drug seizures, but more effective immigration reform could help turn this negative aspects among borders around allowing for a more feasible form of citizenship into the U.S. instead of actions happening illegally. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/special/world/patrolling-the-us-mexico-border/
Immigration Policy Center’s writer Mary Giovagnoli expresses “an overview of the underlying legal system, the most basic principles of reform, the reasons behind them, and how they are likely to be reflected in coming legislation,” in the article “Overhauling Immigration Law: A Brieft History and Basic Principles of Reform.” In addition she outlines the debate between immigration enforcement and immigration reform.
Immigration reform has always been an important issue with President Obama and after watching his speech it shows how he is dedicated to change, yet is he going about it the right way? Obama’s main points on his immigration reform is to grant illegal immigrants earned citizenship so they can be right with the law. The fact is that these illegal immigrations are creating an unbalance in taxes, unemployment rates and effecting the standard of living in the United States. Republicans feel strongly that with Obama’s new immigration reform our economy will suffer and their are many examples to show it.
The new immigration plan is said to add “four times more guest workers then the rejected 2007 immigration proposal and, based on Congressional Budget Office data, adds 46 million mostly lower-skill legal immigrants and their relatives tot he country by 2033 (Sessions, 2013)”. This dramatic increase results will fallen wages, increases in unemployment, and the United States national wealth per-person will decline. As you can see, Obama’s immigration plan is not good for the future of America.
The problem with increasing the amount of people into the country is that they are now working and taking jobs from the citizens. Employers are not required to pay the undocumented immigrants as much as a U.S citizen therefore, they opt out for the cheaper option. Sessions brings up the hospitality business and how they are for the increase in immigrants and how they thank the Senate for allowing this increase. Half of their business is made up of immigrants. WIth unemployment rates so low, do they really need undocumented immigrants to fill those spots? He says, “in a free-market society, wages for workers are set by supply and demand” therefore would it be that hard to raise wages for the welfare of our own citizens? Research from Harvard’s George Barjas showed that, “high levels of low-skill immigration from 1980 – 2000 resulted in a 7.4% wage drop for U.S workers (Sessions, 2013)”. Therefore if we don’t crack down and deport the illegal immigrants who have been taking advantage of our citizens our standard of living will take a turn for the worst.
It is not that the United States does not want immigrants, we just don’t want the ones that do not give back. Immigrants that legally come into the country and wait to receive citizenship is what we want. The immigrants who hop the border and create a family illegally and do not pay taxes is not for the good of the country. Immigrants did build and continue this country and we would not be here without them but we want the immigrants who are driven, educated and have the good interest of the American people. We are missing out on the doctors and the mathematicians who can better this country in the end.
Sessions, J., (2013, September 4). Immigration Plan Bad for U.S Workers. USA Today. Retrieved from http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/09/04/jeff-session-immigration-reform/2759519/
Obama has made it clear that during his second term, immigration reform is a top priority that needs to continue to be pushed forward. After watching videos of Obama’s interviews regarding immigration reforms, he is pushing for changing trends in immigration participation in the United States. Obama has also pushed for legislations in the recent past for the young immigrants and children of immigrants to have a more fair opportunity to succeed in the United States and as a member of society. Starting with the youth is the strategy to change trends in participation legally for immigrants coming to our country.
Many would say that immigration reform is loosening the boarders of our country and making it easier for illegal immigrants to participate as a citizen in the US with out all the legalities of what it means to be a citizen of this country. After reading the four main sections of the “Bipartisan Framework for Comprehensive Immigration Reform” (click here for full article) it is clear the intentions of this reform are not to loosen boards of this country to immigrants, but to provide for immigrants a clear straight path to achieve a legal status. This reform wants to reward and help those here not engaging in criminal activity and help them achieve legal status so they can participate in the United States as active citizens contributing to society. The boarders are going to be just as secure and protected as they have been.
Obama has noted that historically, Latinos (the group with the highest immigration percentages to the US) have had the lower voter turn out in this country and the higher rates of illegally documented workers. In recent years the Latino turn out have increased showing their sense of empowerment and civic participation. Occurrences like this are making Obama feel confident that “immigration reform can get done”. Laws are being put into place to help the youth that are here by no fault of their own. Obama firmly believes that the youth should not be under a cloud of deportation and the immigration reforms are only positive in helping them become the Americans they aspire to be and contribute to society.