With the Presidential elections happening in no time, the issue on immigration reform is once again part of the political debates. Over the years, the immigration policy in the United States has been part of the plan to strengthen communities as well as focus on both the legal and illegal immigrants in the country. Politicians from different sides are pushing for a bill that will tackle this issue and both are also pushing their views on the advantages and disadvantages of immigration reform. The number of immigrants in the country is continuously increasing for both documented and undocumented individuals. Thus, immigration reform was created. However, this has also become a controversial and debatable issue with proponents and opponents arguing their views.
List of Pros of Immigration Reform
1. Influx of workers will boost the economy.
With immigration reform, proponents say that the presence of immigrants, legal and otherwise, produce labor force which add to the nation’s GDP or Gross Domestic Product which is equivalent to $1.5 trillion dollars over a period of 10 years. Moreover, these immigrants are also consumer who will be buying from manufacturers and retailers. Consequently, this will be of help to the economy of the U.S. and the businesses in the country.
2. Immigrants can produce jobs.
Proponents of immigration reform posit that with the leniency given on foreign-born workers, they will be motivated not only to share their skills and be better workers but will also be convinced to start their own businesses than most Americans.
3. Immigrants will give added tax revenues.
The Gang of Eight, a group of eight senators who introduced the “Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act”, proposed that undocumented immigrants will need to wait for 10 years to become green card holders and at the same time pay back taxes and fees. According to pro-immigration reform advocates, this will bring in revenue to the government.
List of Cons of Immigration Reform
1. This will take jobs from Americans.
Opponents of immigration reform say that undocumented immigrants are already taking over the jobs of Americans like in health care, IT and other industries. If these people will be given the chance to become legal immigrants in the country, more people will be lured to go the U.S. as tourists and overstay because they know they will be given amnesty in the future. This will lessen job opportunities for the average Americans.
2. It can result to added expense to the government.
With the number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. at around 11 million in 2012, the government will have spend for services for those who do not have jobs and might be needing assistance in medical care and shelter. Critics say that there are those who enter the country as tourists with the intention of giving birth in the U.S. so their children will become U.S. citizens. Moreover, they do not have money to pay for their hospitalization and the government will be responsible for this.
3. This can lead to security threats.
Some of the people against immigration reform have expresses their concern about letting foreign-born people to live in the country because if these undocumented people will be allowed to be legal, there will be background checks. Given the influx of these immigrants, it might be hard to distinguish those who can be a threat to the security of the country
Even after a new U.S. President has been voted, the controversial debate on immigration reform will continue to exist. With the pros and cons listed above, there are indeed significant points given by both sides. In the end, the lives of the American people are at stake so it is important to remember that the pros should outweigh the cons.