Michael Bloomberg: Not Passing Immigration Reform 'National Suicide'

Michael Bloomberg: Not Passing Immigration Reform 'National Suicide'

Mike Bloomberg is not shying away from the spotlight in his post-mayoral career. The now-former New York City mayor appeared on Fusion to discuss, among other things, immigration reform with host Jorge Ramos, whom he told that anything less than full reform would be “national suicide.”

Bloomberg, appearing on Fusion’s America with Jorge Ramos, responded to the host’s question as to why Republicans appeared to be “stalling” on reforming America’s immigration laws. He had nothing kind to say about Republicans (and nothing at all to say about Democrats) on the matter.

“It defies imagination why anybody would postpone,” an exasperated Bloomberg said. “We are selling our birthright here.” He then listed examples of what he believed were good reasons to reform immigration policy by allowing more illegal immigrants to remain in the country.

Bloomberg claimed that cracking down on illegal immigrants has resulted in Americans “hav[ing] crops in the field that rot because there’s no people to pick those crops; Americans don’t want to do that work.” This was, perhaps, an allusion to reports of rotting crops in Washington, Alabama, and Georgia after immigration enforcement swept various farms.

However, these reports are better interpreted as a matter of timing, given that they arose around harvest time, giving farmers little time to find replacements. Georgia, moreover, resolved its problem, hiring prisoners to harvest crops from the fields.

Agriculture was not the only industry Bloomberg predicted would collapse without immigration reform. He cited “engineers being educated here, and then they can’t get a green card” as another example of how the current system hurts the United States, and alleged that, overall, the United States is “creating industries overseas.”

He did not address the evidence that creating industries overseas is precisely, in many instances, the key to solving America’s immigration problem. For example, Mexico’s strengthening economy is leading to fewer Mexicans saying they would illegally cross the border if they had a chance. Mexico is currently continuing to work to attract foreign investment by reforming its energy laws to allow for more efficient exploitation of energy resources.

Ultimately, Bloomberg told Ramos that anything less than full immigration reform was “national suicide,” but did not offer any particular measures that would improve the immigration situation (Bloomberg has a particularly lackluster track record on immigration specifics). Ramos, an outspoken supporter of immigration reform, agreed.