By Luis Hernandez
EL PASO – The ongoing immigration reform debate – either in favor of or against any drastic legislative change, – usually focuses on the influx of undocumented immigrants, while ignoring its effect on the U.S. economy.
The way current immigration laws are written and executed is making it harder for companies to compete, according to a new report published by the Partnership for a New American Economy (PNAE), an organization created to highlight the contributions made by foreign entrepreneurship in Fortune 500 companies, 40 percent of which were founded by immigrants or children of immigrants.
“We are having the wrong immigration debate,” said Jeremy Robbins, of the PNAE and special counsel to New York mayor Michael Bloomberg.
The benefits the immigrant labor force provide the U.S. is substantial, said Roberto Rodríguez Hernández, Mexican consul general in El Paso. “Ninety-nine percent of immigrants are people who are not criminals, who don’t wish to cause any problems and don’t come to this country to steal from healthcare services or collapse the social security program. Simply put, their participation is very important because they contribute to the economic development of the United States,” said Rodríguez.
The notion that immigrants are more likely to start their own business and subsequently generate more jobs in the U.S. is what the PNAE report is trying to portray.
But in at atmosphere of economic uncertainty and high unemployment the question many Americans would argue is that why should more immigrants be allowed into the country and possibly take jobs away from them?
A counter argument to that impression would be that the country is currently facing a large over- and under-educated workforce…