What’s most important to you when it comes to immigration reform?

The U.S. Senate passed an immigration reform bill yesterday 68-32.  The House will now take up the issue, but Republican leaders have made it clear they will draft their own version of the bill. The Senate bill includes a 13-year path to citizenship for immigrants living in the country illegally, new visa programs, as well as measures for increased border security.

Today’s Question: What’s most important to you when it comes to immigration reform?

  • PaulJ

    Immigrants should be required to have middle class jobs. Otherwise it puts US in the position of importing brown skinned people to menial jobs at barely livable wages. That’s not only a poor tactic for reducing poverty, but is also humiliating for US.

    • kevins

      My white skinned Irish relatives were about as uneducated as could be when they got kicked off the ship in the Carolinas…five generations later, I have a PhD. Some achievements take time.

      • PaulJ

        Times have changed. Rationalizing current oppression with macro-economic concepts of intergenerational capital formation presupposes the future will mimic the past, that people should be stepping stones, and that there are no other tactics.

        • kevins

          Whatever that means…but the past is the best predictor of the future.

          • Gary F

            When your white skinned Irish ancestors came here fire generations ago the United States was not borrowing 40% of every dollar it spends and it didn’t have the massive government social welfare system it has today.

            Our system can’t handle it.

          • JQP

            true, and you were very likely to die before you reached the age of 60. Unless you were child labor – then notch it down to age 12-30. Big Coal – Small Children – the foundation of American heavy industry.

          • kevins

            No borrowing from other countries, but they may have displaced a lot of natives and borrowed the land . I wonder if the natives wouldn’t like to have their old social welfare system back.

  • JQP

    Billions spent on Mexican border protection will be matched 4 fold by questionable-immigrants to bypass the new system. There is no winning this through a wasteful and massive tin-soldier and technology spend-doggle.
    Revise the laws to create an environment where 90% of “currently undocumented guests” want to be identified – most people prefer to have the protection of being legal. Build a system to facilitate a friendly and helpful management of these guests. Basically “Wal-Mart/Target” – you want more customers in the door.
    The current para-military model ( suppress, distress, express) is about as successful as the war on drugs. Hoo-Ahh.

  • Jim G

    My most important issue is to allow immigrants already in the country a legal path to citizenship. Secondly, provide a stable guest worker program that also has a path to citizenship. Third, make employers responsible for hiring only those people with legal,verifiable papers and make the penalties severe for those employers who skirt the laws and hire illegals knowingly. Make the promise of citizenship a reality, so there is no incentive to cheat the system.

  • Bobb

    Basically our country is becoming over developed, and letting 10 or 20 million unlawful immigrants stay just increases competition for scarse resources, namely employment, small business etc. Insecure borders promote drug runners and other desperadoes. Try backpacking in the Arizona desert, it’s a hellish mileau
    of illegals with guns. As far as undocumented workers doing the work that Americans don’t wish to do, consider this: I do landscaping and have MS, BS and AS degrees,
    Summa Cum Laude……

  • Steve

    The government wants more and more people here, illegal or not, to fuel econonomic growth at 4% per year. That means our economy must double every 25 years!! This is unsustainable and very short sighted…

  • Jack Wagon

    AFTER we actually have border security, I would support a path to Permanent Resident status for those who came here illegally, have been working and not committing crimes. I cannot support granting citizenship to someone whose first act on U.S. soil was a crime. They’ll be able to stay and continue to work and their children born here will be citizens.

  • Gordon near Two Harbors

    I think we have no choice but to open a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million folks who are here illegally. There is NO WAY they will all be deported, and we don’t want a huge underclass simmering in our society, resentful, and potentially subversive.

    I would also reduce immigration quotas to 500,000 per year. During the decades of massive immigration during the 19th century we never took in more than about 300,000 per year, but now we have to absorb 700,000 to a million people every year, despite the fact that the frontier is long gone, our urban areas are sprawling and choked with people and our open spaces and wild lands disappearing.

    It’s a big world out there, and not everyone can move to North America. Export American ideas on democracy, and encourage people to build up their native countries, just like Americans had to built theirs. I would like to see immigration essentially phased out over time, except for those folks who have the types of skills that are hard to find in the US.

    We don’t need to bring people here for cheap labor, when we have huge numbers of our own citizens on welfare. There is no logic to it. What kind of land do you want your grandkids to inherit?

    We are full.

    • Guest

      Very well said. To me immigration numbers are out of balance. They’ve stretched taught our ability to absorb immigrants in a healthy fashion. Also, there is no public discussion of what these numbers should be. I feel those making these decisions are out of touch with the effects of their policies.