Immigration reform must go through budget reconciliation, Build back better: editorial
The reconciliation process is the first step in overhauling our immigration system. Major immigration reform last took place in 1986. Senator Richard Durbin, D-Ill., For years championed the passage of the Dream Act to create a citizenship pathway for young immigrants who work in large corporations, foundations, the public sector and various social impact organizations, including Project Resurrection. Farm workers, GST holders and essential undocumented workers have added tremendous value to our society, economy and tight labor market in these turbulent times.
However, farms, tech companies, banks, food service industries, health care industries, community organizations and many other employers in this country are reporting significant labor shortages, which threaten the economy. economy. Today’s job creators and employers are hampered by an outdated and failing immigration system that does not meet the current needs of the economy.
If these immigrants are given a path to citizenship, the U.S. economy will grow by $ 1.21 trillion over the next 10 years and increase federal, state and local tax revenues by $ 31 billion annually. In addition, undocumented immigrants already have paid billions in social security without any future compensation for their contribution. In Illinois alone, immigrant household income reached $ 71.6 billion in 2019 and immigrants paid $ 21.4 billion in state, local and federal taxes. new Americans in Chicago contributed $ 4.4 billion to the federal government and $ 1.6 billion in state and local taxes. Therefore, the false demonization of immigrants combined with the hypocrisy of politicians who would legislate against the same people who have strengthened the economy and the social fabric of our nation is off-putting.
Some members of Congress have said they agree the immigration system needs to be fixed, but criticize the reconciliation bill as a partisan vehicle driven by Democrats. Absurdity! A recent survey by the American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC) of voters in battlefield states shows that the majority of the public on all sides of the political spectrum supports sensible immigration solutions. Ironically, both sides are wasting an opportunity to bring more immigrant communities to their tent. The Latin American population has quadrupled in the past four decades, and more than 62 million Americans, or 19% of the total population, identified as Hispanic or Latino in the 2020 census. Much of that growth is due to children born in the United States to Latino immigrants who reach voting age. Last year my son voted in his first presidential election. My twin daughters will be old enough to do the same in the next national elections.
The ABIC sought a bipartisan solution for the reconciliation bill. Its members met 41 Republican senators and held 47 public events with senators from both parties seeking a compromise bill, but found that no Republican congressional leader was willing to take action. public, although privately many agreed with ABIC. Now is the time to break the deadlock! Democrats should not pass up this opportunity; The budget reconciliation bill is to include immigration reforms for dreamers, farm workers, GST holders and employees without essential papers. The nation’s economy, social fabric and the Democratic Party will benefit from the missed opportunity Republicans have to bring in more immigrants who become citizens and their families as allies.
Raul I. Raymundo is co-chair of the American Business Immigration Coalition and CEO and co-founder of the Resurrection Project, a social impact organization in Chicago.