It has been almost one year since the Senate passed its comprehensive immigration reform bill with a strong bipartisan vote. Despite broad support for comprehensive reform, House Republican leaders have refused to address this important issue and continue to deny Members the opportunity to vote on any immigration legislation.
In addition to the majority of the American people, numerous faith-based organizations, and over thirty House Republicans, the business community is also calling for Republican leadership to fix our broken immigration system. Here’s a look at business groups and leaders from across the country that are urging the House to take action to fix our broken immigration system now:
Business Roundtable: “Immigration reform would boost gross domestic product by 4.8 % and productivity by 1% over 20 years… Reform would increase employment and raise wages – adding 9 million workers to the labor force while slightly increasing wages over 20 years… Reform would slash the federal deficit by almost $1.2 trillion over 20 years… Immigrants are 50 percent more likely to start a business than native-born workers. Immigrants or their children founded more than 40% of U.S. Fortune 500 companies.” [Report, June 2014]
News Corp Executive Chairman Rupert Murdoch: “People are looking for leadership—those who stand for something and offer a vision for how to take America forward and keep our nation economically competitive. One of the most immediate ways to revitalize our economy is by passing immigration reform... If we are serious about advancing our economic future and about creating job growth here in America, then we must realize that it is suicidal to suggest closing our doors to the world's entrepreneurs.” [Wall Street Journal, 6/18/14]
AT&T Inc. CEO and Business Roundtable Chairman Randall Stephenson: “Congress and the administration must focus on policies that drive economic growth, including tax reform, immigration reform, trade expansion and long-term fiscal stability.” [U.S. News & World Report, 6/17/14]
U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Tom Donohue: “If the Republicans don’t do [immigration reform], they shouldn’t bother to run a candidate in 2016.” [Politico, 5/12/14]
Microsoft Founder Bill Gates: “To remain competitive, we need a workforce that consists of the world’s brightest minds [and we need to] make it easier for foreign-born scientists and engineers to work for U.S. companies.” [Forbes, 3/24/14]
Berkshire Hathaway Chairman Warren Buffet: “I think we should have a more logical immigration policy. It would mean we would attract a lot of people, but we would attract the people we want to attract in particular — in terms of education, tens or hundreds of thousands of people. We enhance their talents and have them stick around here.” [Forbes, 3/24/14]
Caterpillar Chairman and CEO Doug Oberhelman: “Providing consistent, reliable access to both high-skilled and low-skilled talent is critical to sustain our nation’s global competitiveness in many industries including healthcare, technology, manufacturing, hospitality, and tourism. We need reform that will provide opportunities for immigrants and foreign students to enter the U.S. and our workforce legally, attracting and keeping the best, the brightest, and the hard working.” [Forbes, 3/24/14]
636 Business Organizations: “We are united in the belief that we can and must do better for our economy and country by modernizing our immigration system. Done properly, reform will deter illegal immigration, protect and complement our U.S. workforce, better respond to changing economic and demographic needs, and generate greater productivity and economic activity, while respecting family unity. Failure to act is not an option. We cannot afford to be content and watch a dysfunctional immigration system work against our overall national interest. In short, immigration reform is an essential element of a jobs agenda and economic growth. It will add talent, innovation, investment, products, businesses, jobs, and dynamism to our economy.” [Letter, 2/25/14]
Deloitte U.S. CEO Joe Echevarria: “One thing the overwhelming majority of Americans agree on, regardless of political party, is the need for immigration reform. Not only is it one of the keys necessary to create a healthier national economy and critical to America’s security, growth, and prosperity, it is also an integral component for the success of American business… Make no mistake: if we fail to attract the brightest minds and best people, other countries will… We simply cannot afford to wait any longer to bring real solutions to a system that isn’t working as we need it to. Our current immigration policies are not just hurting those looking to come to America, but those already here, by stifling opportunities for tremendous growth.” [Reuters, 1/7/14]
Motorola Solutions, Inc. Chairman and CEO Greg Brown: “[Immigration reform] remains a top priority for the business community and will drive economic growth while simultaneously improving national security.” [Huffington Post, 11/28/13]
It’s no surprise that the business community is coming out in strong support of comprehensive immigration reform. Not only is fixing our broken immigration system the morally right thing to do, but it also makes economic sense, as evidenced by the Congressional Budget Office’s announcement that an immigration overhaul would reduce the deficit by $900 billion over the next 20 years. It’s time for House Republicans leaders to do what’s best for our nation’s economy and allow comprehensive immigration reform legislation to come to the Floor for a vote.
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