With the release of the report by the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) last week, Director of Research Steven Camarota drove the final nail into the coffin of immigration reform for this year, saying:
Government data show that since 2000 all of the net gain in the number of working-age (16 to 65) people holding a job has gone to immigrants (legal and illegal).
This is remarkable given that native-born Americans accounted for two-thirds of the growth in the total working-age population.… There were still fewer working-age natives holding a job in the first quarter of 2014 than in 2000, while the number of immigrants with a job was 5.7 million above the 2000 level.
All of the net increase in employment went to immigrants in the last 14 years.
This effectively obliterates the assumptions underlying the immigration reform bill SB 744, which was promoted by a bipartisan group of Democrats and Republicans (called by some observers the “Gang of Eight”) and passed by the Senate, 68-32, a year ago last week. That bill was based on several key assumptions: 1) that there is a labor shortage in the country, 2) that there are some jobs only immigrants want, and 3) that higher levels of immigration would stimulate the economy so that everyone, native-born or immigrant, would find more work.
According to the Social Security Administration at the time, passage of S.744 would add nearly $300 billion in revenues over the next 10 years while costing (in welfare) only $33 billion over the same period.
The bill would have given present illegal immigrants a tortuous “path to citizenship” while doubling the number of new immigrants allowed into the country over the next decade to 20 million. It also promised greater protection of the country’s southern borders from illegals entering the country. Critics called it amnesty now in exchange for promises later.
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