A Bad Start on Immigration Reform
By LAWRENCE DOWNES
Representative Lamar Smith, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, is offering a new version of an old immigration bill that’s due to be voted on this week. It’s being touted by supporters as a signal that the Republican Party understands the election message sent by voters – particular Latinos and Asians – in favor of immigration reform.
Don’t be fooled. The resurrected STEM Jobs Act is a tweaked version of a bad bill that died earlier this year in the House, and it’s bad for the same reasons as before. The bill increases visas for immigrants skilled in STEM fields — science, technology, engineering and math — by eliminating another visa category entirely: the “diversity” visas set aside for people from countries with relatively low immigration rates to the United States.
Here’s the math: add 55,000 new visas for immigrants with advanced STEM degrees. Take away 55,000 diversity visas. A zero-sum game, in pro-immigrant disguise.
... If the Republicans are going to offer real immigration reform, they will have to do better than this.
We, on the winning side, don`t have to justify our demands with reasons or evidence or appeals to the common good. You have to provide terms of your final surrender that we deem acceptable.