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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

MCCAIN: REPUBLICAN SUPPORT FOR IMMIGRATION REFORM WILL BE TIED TO GUEST WORKERS

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I'm glad we've got Republicans like John McCain who told President Obama at yesterday's White House meeting that he needs to stand up to labor unions and support an expansion of guest worker programs. If we're going to avoid a re-run of 1986's legalization program - which dealt with the problem of illegal immigrants in the US in the 80s but failed to have any impact on stopping the flow of illegal immigration that has brought us to where we are now - then we need to have a guest worker program that will meet the needs of employers and the country in the years to come. Otherwise, we'll be talking about immigration reform in 2025 or so wondering how we got to the point where we need another legalization program.

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Comments

  1. gg's Avatar
    Yes, John has made his view well known for quite some time now. He is against a provision which the Unions wanted to get inside the Obama tent for supporting the immigration bill. Obama has his job cut out now, since John has made it very clear he is not going to support the bill unless the temporary worker program is included which the Unions oppose.
  2. Jim's Avatar
    I agree with John McCain on this one. The Pres. and the Dems in general should stand up to labor unions and set limits otherwise the country will go the way of GM and Chrysler.
  3. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    McCain is right.
  4. D's Avatar
    Lets see who wins the fight between Unions and Hispanics. My guess is it will be hispanics because organized labor/unions are declining assets to invest in. McCain is right and Durbin is wrong.
  5. Another voice's Avatar
    I agree with McCain but the Union v. Hispanics will be tough both groups have muscle, my guess is that Hispanics will win because the dems will not give them up that easy to the republicans.
  6. George Chell in Singapore's Avatar
    Need to study from the Singapore system or else we will continue loosing jobs to countries such as Singapore and will become the laughing stock of the world along with the Washington DC metro!
  7. Jack's Avatar
    'we need to have a guest worker program'

    The portion of guest worker proponents who actually believe it would prevent the need for future amnesties might ask themselves:

    1) Is it reasonable to think that people who make the leap to move to another country and have steady employment there will not want to stay?

    2) Is it reasonable to think that 'guest' workers will not 'put down roots' as Pres. Obama likes to say, e.g., not have any children?

    3) How do you make sure the 'guest' workers will leave that is politically feasible in a climate of demagoguery over 'dividing families', 'rounding up', etc.?

    We constantly hear calls for a 'guest worker program' but not a lot of details about how it would actually work in light of reality based issues like those above.
  8. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    Jack, of course, it is reasonable to assume that some guest workers will put down roots and will want to stay permanently, and a good immigration system should have ways for them to do it legally. I know it is not what you want to hear, but you need to understand that the immigration system does not really change the total number of immigrants - it only impacts what % of them come legally. Either way, you are going to have these people settling down in the US, you might as well choose to let them do it legally.
  9. Another voice's Avatar
    Some people may want to put roots other may just actually come and work here for a period of time and go back to their families and countries. That is why the reform is needed to clarify all the choices future immigrants will have in all cases and situations. If the demand for labor is there and the guest workers want to stay then we should give them a way, if the economy does not have the demand for their services then they can fulfill their obligations under the guest worker permit. It has to be a practical approach NOT a restrictionist and nativist approach!!
  10. Jack's Avatar
    'Some people may want to put roots other may just actually come and work here for a period of time and go back to their families and countries.'

    Right. The guest worker concept pretends that ALL will go back when history shows that ain't gonna happen in a liberal democracy. Most proponents presumably know this and don't care but there are a few who seemingly make a good faith effort to propose novel ideas they think would provide sufficient incentive. I just don't see how you could, e.g., hold a sizable enough chunk of their pay in escrow to ensure they don't just forfeit the funds while still receiving enough money to live on.


    'a good immigration system should have ways for them to [stay] legally'

    I agree. The guest worker concept, by denying that, creates illegal immigrants.


    'the immigration system does not really change the total number of immigrants'

    Not sure exactly what you mean by 'the immigration system'. If you mean that the number will stay the same regardless of what policies are in place, I disagree. Even a law limiting immigration that has no teeth will cause some people not to immigrate illegally just because it's illegal. For example, even if you formally declared that we aren't going to do *anything* to make you leave once you're here (like decriminalization as opposed to legalization). Also, are you saying if we went to Kevin Johnson style 'open floodgates' (virtually unlimited immigration) that more foreign nationals would not come? I see it as a continuum--everything you do from a policy standpoint which relates directly or indirectly to immigration will make potential immigration a little (or a lot) more attractive or a little (or a lot) less attractive, thus affecting the number. This is true of both illegal and legal immigration, e.g., the efficiency (or lack thereof) of USCIS should theoretically make a difference in that some people out there will decide not to come based on that as the last deciding factor. Sort of like how a market price reflects all known information, the word on experiences with USCIS, positive or negative, will get back to potential immigrants and have some affect on their decision making.
  11. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    "Even a law limiting immigration that has no teeth will cause some people not to immigrate illegally just because it's illegal. "

    US has one of the most retrictive immigration laws, and there has been enough money wasted on "teeth". Reality is not your best friend, Jack. Immigration is impacted by the economy and cultural traditions much more than the laws, and Congress can only impact the later.
  12. mady's Avatar
    It looks like a stronger person is asking a weaker person
    not to stand on legs and hit while standing on legs
    and telling the same man if you dont stand i wont give
    the food .Economy is made by people if it fails u have
    to find out the cause and because u dont have money dont
    steel the food of others.If you want to steel the food why
    do u read the bible and go to church.I thing for GOD every
    human being is same.Punish for the crime but dont hit on the
    back and make run.I think make them legal but not citizens
    take the fine and tax.Why so much money for Everify all of
    a sudden.Put the Border in control make ur walls.Instead
    of Everify create more jobs.
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