According to the Pew Research Center Hispanic Trends Project, nearly 12 million unauthorized immigrants live in the country today. Most of them live on the periphery to avoid deportation back to their home countries.
When President Obama made immigration reform a priority in his second term, many of these unofficial citizens saw a glimmer of hope that they could one day live the American dream without fear. After all, the proposed immigration reforms hope to recognize the millions of undocumented immigrants in the U.S. Sadly, this silent majority will have to wait a little longer, after Congress shelved the bill. As reported by the Migration Policy Institute:
“The small window for enactment of a major U.S. immigration overhaul during 2014 seems to have closed. Dormant in the months after Senate passage of a sweeping immigration reform bill in June 2013 that was immediately met with a cold shoulder in the House, immigration reform got a fresh lease on life at the end of January when House Republican leaders outlined their set of immigration principles. Optimism that release of those principles heralded a political and legislative breakthrough proved short-lived, however.
Less than a week after the principles were issued at House Republicans’ annual retreat, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) pronounced legislative action unlikely, citing lack of trust in the Obama administration. “There’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws, and it’s going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes,” he said.”
While there are valid oppositions to these reforms, a veteran Philadelphia immigration lawyer like Atty. Joseph E. Best would argue that granting amnesty to unauthorized immigrants may actually be beneficial to the country.
It Would Save the Nation Money
News outlet CNBC estimates that if America deported every last one of its unauthorized residents, it would spend $2.6 trillion in the next 10 years. On the other hand, projections by the Congressional Budget Office show that if these immigrants were given citizenship, they would increase tax revenue by $4.5 trillion in the next three years, and increase the GDP by $1.5 trillion over the next decade.
Most Immigrants are Law-abiding Citizens
Many people migrate to America illegally in search of better work. As such, they do their jobs diligently and avoid criminal activities lest they face deportation. In other words, they already subject themselves to the country’s laws; all they lack is a lawful immigration status and eventually citizenship. Given the chance, many will approach an immigration lawyer in Philadelphia to apply for it.
Keeps Families Intact
Unauthorized immigrants often start families inside the U.S. If they were to be deported, they would be needlessly separated from their children who are, by law, already American citizens.
(Source: Republican Congressional Leaders Shelve Immigration Reform for 2014, MigrationPolicy.org, February 13, 2014)