By Alex Gonzalez
What infuriates me is that this is a debate over water that has already fallen over the dam. Romney mimicked immigration restrictionists’ arguments… As for Mitt Romney, aside from what I (but perhaps not many Republican primary voters) consider his shameful attempt to demagogue the immigration issue—Michael Barone
I am not sure how many Republicans and Conservatives really think that Mitt Romney is anti-Immigrant, he is not. But his policies are. His views on immigration are un-conservative because they do not reflect the conservative tenets of free market capitalist society. They lean more toward that of a “restrictionist” nation. For someone who claims to be a very successful free enterprise capitalist, not knowing basic principles of labor supply-and-demands, and simple mathematics, is pure naiveté. Furthermore, playing naive with the intention of stirring resentment between native and foreign workers is not a conservative principle. Perhaps, Newt Gingrich is right when he stated “out the four candidates” Romney has the most anti-immigrant views. This is a truth that could hurt the American economy.
Mitt Romney claims that there are 11 millions of “illegal immigrants” working in jobs that could go to 11 million of Americans. This is unlikely. First, 11 million is now more like 10 million according the US census. Additionally, only about 7 million, or 5%, are able bodies working in the national labor force. Also, according to labor statistics and the Congressional Budget Office, 77% of the jobs performed by undocumented workers are jobs native workers don’t want—agriculture, services, meat packing etc…And this has proven to be true in Georgia and Alabama more recently.
Officially, the national unemployment level is at 8.5%, which means that there are about 13.5 million of unemployed Americas. In a free market economy like the American economy, 5% unemployment is considered full-employment because you have to provide workers with the necessary setting to change jobs if they want, and to retrain for any new jobs created by new technologies, or to acquire new skills. A system of Full-employment with zero unemployment would be considered socialism. In essence, we only need to create about 6.5 million jobs to go back to a 5% full-employment.
If we do not concentrate on the issue of immigration soothing the economic job loss, soon there will be a shortage of workers in the U.S. since 4 million of baby-boomers turn 65 years of age each year, which makes them eligible for the retirement. Thus, even if we don’t create any jobs, within 3 years, we are most likely to have full-employment since the pool of workers exiting the labor force is larger than the one entering. That is why Rick Santorum correctly pointed out that we need immigration because we are not replenishing ourselves.
Therefore, when Mitt Romney says that illegal immigrants have 11 million jobs that could be for American citizens, he is only stirring up resentment against foreign workers with false data. If indeed, those 7 million, not 11 million, of undocumented workers would “self-deport”, what would happen to those industries that rely on foreign workers? According to CBO report, 77% of those jobs are jobs natives won’t do, where will Romney get workers to do those jobs . Will Mitt Romney force American citizens into taking jobs they don’t’ want? In reality, if all illegal immigrants were to “self-deport”, only about 23% of those jobs would go to natives, the rest would go vacant as it has been the experiment in the state of Georgia and Alabama. Romney;s view have nothing to with conservatism and more with “restrintionism” and nativism.
The reality is that Romney’s restictionist views are only stirring nativism. So Newt Gingrich is right when he stated that Mitt Romney has the most anti-immigrant views of all the 4 candidates in the debate last night. Even, Michale Barone agrees that Romney’s immigration views are anti-immigrant: “What infuriates me is that this is a debate over water that has already fallen over the dam. Romney mimicked immigration restrictionists’ arguments that in-state tuition and Selective-Service-type amnesty would be “magnets” for further illegal immigration. As for Mitt Romney, aside from what I (but perhaps not many Republican primary voters) consider his shameful attempt to demagogue the immigration issue.
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