The current legal immigration system, where the United States admits more than one million low-skilled immigrants a year, is necessary “as baby boomers retire,” the New York Times’ editors claim.
In a new piece in the Times, the newspaper’s editors joined The Washington Post in their disdain for the RAISE Act by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) and Sen. David Perdue (R-GA), which could cut current legal immigration levels in half to relieve American wages, proponents argue.
The Times’ editors claim the RAISE Act– endorsed by President Trump last week–would “do nothing” to help Americans, despite a slew of research and reports indicating that a slowdown could benefit the current population:
President Trump has endorsed legislation that would slash legal immigration by half, mainly by cutting the number of visas granted to relatives of citizens, while favoring people who speak English and have advanced degrees. The bill, which would do nothing to solve the country’s immigration and economic challenges, is unlikely to become law. The only way to understand Mr. Trump’s vocal support of an obvious turkey is as yet another attempt to energize his dwindling base of right-wing and nativist supporters.
Proponents of the bill argue that it could:
- Reduce the number of Green Cards given out every year from about one million to 500,000;
- Prioritize immediate family households, thus ending extended family chain migration to the U.S.;
- Create a visa program for U.S. citizens to bring elderly parents to U.S. for caretaking purposes;
- Eliminate the diversity lottery, where 50,000 visas are “arbitrarily allocated” every year; and
- Cap permanent U.S. refugees resettlement to 50,000 migrants per year.
But, according to the Times’ editors, the current levels of legal immigration are needed so that baby boomers can retire:
Moreover, as studies have repeatedly shown, immigration boosts productivity and economic growth; restricting it would have the opposite effect. Growth is determined by the changes in productivity — how much each worker produces — and the size of the work force. Productivity in recent decades has been growing more slowly than in the past for reasons that economists do not fully understand. The labor force is also growing slowly as baby boomers retire. Restricting immigration would reinforce both trends.
The Times’ editorial against the RAISE Act echoes the Post’s, as Breitbart Texas reported.
Like the Times’ editorial, the Washington Post fixated on the necessity for mass immigration to continue a 2 percent gross domestic product growth rate.
Unlike the Times, the Washington Post admitted what immigration hawks have said, which is that high levels of legal immigration depress the wages of domestic workers.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart Texas. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.