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Special Interest Purchased Immigration Policy


No Jobs for Americans

Special Interest Purchased Immigration Policy

Massive Wrongs against the American People

Over 17 million immigrant workers came to the U.S. from 2000 to 2014, and the number of native-born not working increased by the same number, 17 million. The total non-working in the 16-65 age group has risen to an astonishing 69 million. In addition, 7.3 million who wanted full-time work were forced to part-time.

Some other ways of looking at the situation look just as grim. The total population grew by 25.7 million or 14 percent from 2000 to 2014, but employment only grew 4 percent. The labor participation rate for natives dropped from 77.1 percent to 71.5 percent during that period. The labor participation rate for immigrants increased from 73.2 to 73.4 percent.

The decline in labor participation rates has affected every age, race, and education group.

The labor rate participation (aged 16-65) for those with college degrees has dropped from 87.7 to 85.3 percent since 2000. Those with less than a high school education have seen the largest drop in participation, from 58.9 to 47.1 percent. Black labor participation has dropped from 64.5 to 56.9 percent. The rate for U.S. born Hispanics has dropped from 68.2 to 60.5 percent. The overall rate for the U.S. workforce has dropped from 73.7 to 66.4 percent.

Although the negative impact of immigration on native employment is shocking, it is not really surprising. Edwin Rubenstein Economic Research Consulting has been tracking this displacement of American workers by foreign cheap labor since 1986. Studies by the Rand Corporation and several other research institutions and university economic departments have been confirming and publishing papers on this displacement at least since 1980. The economics of failure to enforce our immigration laws at the workplace combined with excessive increases in legal immigration are exactly what common sense and classical economic theory would have predicted. Excess labor supply displaces many American workers and drives down their wages.

The new CIS research and many previous and ongoing studies make it absolutely clear that there is no genuine labor shortage in the U.S. as claimed by the usual cheap labor lobbyist groups: the U. S Chamber, National Restaurant Association, National Association of Home Builders, National Association of Manufacturers, Business Round Table, and many other business associations and individual corporations. This generally includes Chambers of Commerce and Farm Bureaus at the state level. They have been joined by technology billionaires like Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg who is leading the political spending charge on replacing Americans with cheaper foreign workers on H-1B visas. Inflated H-1B quotas have been doing substantial damage to American science, technology, engineering, and math graduates. In addition, ethnic lobbies now push for amnesty and higher immigration levels with the principal objective of increasing their political power. All of this lobbying power and high levels of political financial support for cooperative legislators is driving the U.S. toward “comprehensive immigration reform” that will make the plight of American workers and the American people far worse.

The claim that the U.S. has a labor shortage, given the overwhelming objective evidence accumulating to the contrary, is completely irresponsible. Yet it is continually voiced by many Republican establishment politicians, especially Karl Rove, Haley Barbour, John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Marco Rubio, and Paul Ryan.

The mantra of the George W. Bush administration was: “They are only doing jobs Americans won’t do.” The truth is that there are very few jobs, if any, for which this is true. Only 6 of 415 job classifications by the Department of Labor have a majority of foreign workers. Strenuous agricultural jobs are only a small part of the cheap labor immigration problem. Less than 1.3 percent of foreign workers are directly involved in agriculture. However, illegal immigrant workers quickly spread from low-paid jobs to higher paid jobs in direct competition with American workers in construction, restaurants, hotels, and now even high tech positions. Even the hardest agricultural jobs are still done by Americans in areas that have not become addicted to and dependent upon cheap foreign labor. Cheap foreign labor drives out American labor. Once foreign labor becomes pervasive regionally in a lower paid job category, that job is stigmatized as having no future. Employers then find it difficult to hire American workers.

Senate bill S.744, the Schumer-Rubio bill. would not only make things worse with an expensive amnesty for 8.5 million illegal immigrant workers, but according to the Congressional Budget Office would bring in another 20 million legal immigrant workers over the next decade. Including massive guest-worker increases, some analysts believe that number would be closer to 30-33 million. S.744 is essentially a special interest bill to please cheap labor business associations and ethnic power lobbies. In addition to its disastrous impact on American wage earners and the fiscal integrity of federal, state, and local governments, it would change the electorate from center-right to dominant-left, essentially dooming every conservative issue before federal and state legislatures—right-to-life, religious liberty, gun-rights, free speech, private medical care, etc.

Besides the enormous displacement of American workers by cheap foreign labor, the resulting income suppression from having to compete with continuous waves of cheaper foreign workers in our own country adds to the painful injustice of politicized immigration policy. According to economic studies by Harvard economist George Borjas, American wages are being suppressed nearly $2,800 annually per wage earner. These twin economic evils are the consequence of unconscionable political disregard for traditional American standards of ethical business and government. Moreover, it spits in the face of cherished patriotic values. Special interest dominated immigration policy and unchallenged illegal immigration are massive wrongs against the American people.

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