Of all the racist things Donald Trump has done, today’s bill introduction on the reduction of legal immigration lands near the top of the list.
Flanked by food stamp dog whistler Tom Cotton and Obama death wisher David Perdue, Trump touted the “benefits” of this “amazing” new immigration bill. English speaking immigrants would be prioritized. Refugee intake numbers would be capped at 50,000 people per year. The immigration lottery program would be discontinued.
All of this makes zero sense from an economic perspective. But then again, racist principles are incompatible with facts or logic.
Immigrants are critical to our economy. They are a higher share of the workforce than U.S. citizens, start businesses at higher rates and are more likely to own businesses. From a cultural perspective they contribute even more.
My best friend growing up was a Muslim immigrant from Afghanistan. His father fought against the Russians during the ten year war and they came to the states when he was young. His parents eventually became homeowners, business owners and helped four kids go through various stages of collegiate education, including law school.
I wrote about this earlier this year and I’ll say it again: The facts on immigration are available for everyone to access: almost half of undocumented immigrants do not enter this country illegally. They enter legally and overstay their work visas. Two-thirds of undocumented immigrants have resided in the United States for ten years or longer. Undocumented immigrants make up 8 percent of the workforce in the U.S. and 26 percent of the workforce in farming occupations. Nationally, undocumented immigrants contribute approximately $12 billion dollars to the U.S. economy in taxes paid. Immigrants (undocumented or not) are less likely to commit crimes than people born in the United States.
So whether they enter the U.S. legally or not, almost all immigrants are coming here for the right reasons: to help out their families and contribute greatness to our country.