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There’s a myth that Donald Trump and his Republican enablers like to spread.  The myth: immigrants hurt our economy and take away American jobs. 

Immigrants have little to NO effect on the wages and employment of native-born workers.  There are NOT a finite number of jobs. When immigrants come they also increase demand for housing and other goods and services which creates employment opportunities for all workers.
The majority of economists agree that immigration is net positive for the economy.  Immigration is associated with overall increases in GDP and higher standards of living.   Even the conservative Heritage Foundation agrees:
“Whether low-skilled or high-skilled, immigrants boost national output, enhance specialization and provide a net economic benefit.”

So WHY has immigration become such a hot-button wedge issue in our country?   

Donald Trump and his acolytes have learned that immigrants make the perfect political punching bag.  They can be blamed for ALL the problems of the country - which excites Trump’s core base and brings them to the polls.
But stigmatizing entire cultures does nothing to address the REAL issues we have in our immigration system.

Right now, at the border we have thousands of people piling up in over-crowed detention camps. The sheer numbers of undocumented migrants have become a real issue.
But as a signatory to United Nations agreements after World War II, the United States is OBLIGED to offer asylum to any person who can demonstrate a well-founded fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or threat of violence.
The Trump Administration has made a serious problem worse by blocking border entry points forcing migrants to enter our country illegally.  Cutting foreign aid to Central American Countries and making irresponsible statements has also magnified our problems.
With no plan to stem the tidal wave of undocumented migrants, the President shamelessly uses his bully pulpit to inflame voters about the untrue invasion of rapists and murders.
Any serious immigration legislation needs to deal with people in detention camps, a plan to stem the flow of Central American citizens coming to our borders, the eleven million undocumented migrants in our country, Dreamers and TPS persons in the country on temporary status.
There’s NO excuse for separating families, crowding hundreds of people in camps designed for far fewer and letting children and adults die for lack of medical care. This ISN’T the America that we know and love.
It’s time for Congress to ACT.  The House passed an Immigration Reform Bill, but Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans won't even take up the matter.  The failure of the Senate to take up an admittedly complicated and contentious issue is unconscionable. We deserve better.
Conversations about immigration should be detailed and nuanced. Overly simple explanations of “enemies” miss the mark and prevent us from engaging in intelligent discourse.
Please know that if enough U.S Senate Republicans demand that the Majority Leader put Immigration Reform on the agenda, it will be done. Immigration is a boon to our economy and we shouldn’t be allergic to progress. Contact your Senator and demand action now.
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