aside President Is Basing Immigration Policy Decisions On His Racist Bias And Incorrect “Fake News” Data

The republican President Donald Trump has a habit of developing policies that at are based on his preconceived notions, which are not based on facts and reality but rather on “fake news,” with an anti-immigration bias championed by his base. At some point facts matter and this is especially true regarding the issue of immigration.

Here is the rest of the story based on facts...

Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration, for which Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the twentieth century, in October 2015 was already hearing the republican would be President Donald Trump telling his lies based on “fake news” regarding immigration. He wrote the following warning piece in response.

THE 4 BIG LIES ABOUT IMMIGRANTS – AND THE TRUTH

Donald Trump has opened the floodgates to lies about immigration. Here are the myths, and the facts

MYTH:  Immigrants take away American jobs. 

Wrong. Immigrants add to economic demand, and thereby push firms to create more jobs. 

TGuide

MYTH: We don’t need any more immigrants. 

Baloney. The U.S. population is aging. Twenty-five years ago, each retiree in America was matched by 5 workers. Now for each retiree there are only 3 workers. Without more immigration, in 15 years the ratio will fall to 2 workers for every retiree, not nearly enough to sustain our retiree population.

MYTH: Immigrants are a drain on public budgets. 

Bull. Immigrants pay taxes! The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy released a report this year showing undocumented immigrants paid $11.8 billion in state and local taxes in 2012 and their combined nationwide state and local tax contributions would increase by $2.2 billion under comprehensive immigration reform.

MYTH: Legal and illegal immigration is increasing. 

Wrong again. The net rate of illegal immigration into the U.S. is less than zero. The number of undocumented immigrants living in the U.S. has declined from 12.2 million in 2007 to 11.3 million now, according to Pew Research Center.

Don’t listen to the demagogues who want to blame the economic problems of the middle class and poor on new immigrants, whether here legally or illegally. The real problem is the economic game is rigged in favor of a handful at the top, who are doing the rigging.

We need to pass comprehensive immigration reform, giving those who are undocumented a path to citizenship. Scapegoating them and other immigrants is shameful.

  • There are other important facts about immigration which have been distorted by opponents to immigration. (Source: 4/20/17 Center for American Progress report by Michael D. Nicholson)
  • Immigrants are becoming homeowners at a faster rate than the U.S.-born population. From 1994 to 2015, immigrant homeownership rose 2.3 percentage points while U.S.-born homeownership remained flat. Jacob Vigdor of the University of Washington estimates that immigrants contribute $3.7 trillion to housing markets nationwide.

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  • Compared with all Americans, U.S.-born children of immigrants are more likely to go to college, less likely to live in poverty, and equally likely to be homeowners. Thirty-six percent of U.S.-born children of immigrants are college graduates—5 percent above the national average. Eleven percent of adult U.S.-born children of immigrants live in poverty—below the national average of 13 percent—and 64 percent are homeowners, 1 percent below the national average.
  • Immigrants are less likely to commit crimes or be incarcerated than the U.S.-born population. A 2017 study by the Cato Institute found that the 2014 incarceration rate for immigrants—both authorized and unauthorized—ages 18 to 54 was considerably lower than that of the U.S.-born population. While the foreign-born share of the U.S. population grew from 11.1 percent to 13.5 percent from 2000 to 2015, FBI data indicate that violent crime rates across the country fell 16 percent, while property crime rates fell 21 percent during the same time period.

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  • Working-class, immigrant-headed households with incomes less than 200 percent of the federal poverty line rely less on public benefits and social services than comparable U.S-born households. In 2015, working-class, immigrant-headed households with children received 9.3 percent of their overall income from public programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and Social Security, in comparison with U.S.-born-headed households, which received 15 percent of their income from such programs. Research consistently shows that working-class immigrants use social programs such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income at similar or lower rates than native-born households.
  • Unauthorized immigrants are increasingly entering the United States legally and overstaying visas rather than crossing the border. In 2014, 42 percent of the unauthorized population—around 4.5 million individuals—were visa overstayers. Two-thirds of new unauthorized arrivals in 2014 entered the United States on legal nonimmigrant visas and overstayed their visas’ validity period. Visa overstays have exceeded unauthorized border crossings every year from 2007 through 2014, and, over this period, a total of 600,000 more individuals overstayed visas than entered the United States by crossing the border. According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, or DHS, the three largest source countries of visa overstayers are Canada, Mexico, and Brazil.

Here is link to entire report: The Facts on Immigration Today: 2017 Edition – Center for American 

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As per a 1/11/18 Atlantic report by David A. Graham,  Since the start of his campaign, Trump has depicted immigration as a zero-sum game. “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best,” he said during his candidacy announcement. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

“His presumption seems to be that other nations are deliberately sending to the United States their least-desirable citizens. ”

“This is not how immigration works. Governments are not deciding who to send. People are deciding to leave, often at great risk, out of personal motivation. (They have to file an application to be considered and being selected is literally like winning the lottery as many apply but few are approved.)  Those who come are the ones “who had a special love for freedom and a special courage that enabled them to leave their own land, leave their friends and their countrymen, and come to this new and strange land to build a New World of peace and freedom and hope,” as Ronald Reagan once put it.”

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“This entirely different paradigm is one reason Trump, unlike most of his fellow Republicans, wants to limit not only illegal immigration but legal immigration as well.”

“This zero-sum mentality is why he approaches refugees as safety threats and drains on U.S. government resources, seldom considering the reasons refugees have been driven to leave. There’s a middle ground—there are people who believe that on the one hand, refugees deserve aid but that on the other hand the United States must work within its means, and safety threats must be eliminated—but Trump’s comments, both previously and about Haitians and Salvadorans now, demonstrate this is not his view.”

“Trump’s decision to label these places “shitholes” is coarse and revolting, but the greater failure is his inability to connect his assessment with what it means for the people who live there. He either cannot see or is not interested in the conflicts and violence and poverty that immigrants are seeking to leave behind, and he is not interested in the extent to which the U.S. has contributed to these problems through interventions in El Salvador and Haiti. Thus his cavalier attitude about Haitians (though he was more than happy to acknowledge Haiti’s problems when that was an effective political weapon against Hillary Clinton) or Salvadorans, 200,000 of whom the government announced this week would have to leave, having been allowed to stay following earthquakes in 2001. The historic U.S. role as a hemispheric hegemon and as a symbol of humanitarianism simply does not interest Trump—aides last summer held a 90-minute crash course on this topic—because he cannot fit it into his calculus.”

Related Article:

Spinning the Facts on DACA – FactCheck.org

Fact check: Attorney General Jeff Sessions spins the facts on DACA

AP FACT CHECK: What the Trump administration said about DACA

16 comments

    • Dear Ravenhawks magazine,

      The president is tearing this country apart with his racist leanings and lack of a moral compass. I am thinking that most peoples in this country want a return to decency, policies based on facts, deliberation as to what’s the right thing to do as well as economic prosperity. Republicans appear to be offering a binary (either / or) choice which needs to be rejected soundly.

      Thanks a million times over for all of your support and for this reblog.

      Hugs, Gronda

  1. Gronda, this topic has been prime for the fear-mongering the man in the White House used to get elected. As you note, immigration is accretive to the economy and has always tended to be. We are a nation of immigrants where those who have come have brought a higher propensity than average to be enterpreneurial and earnest. And, many are doing jobs that Americans already here are not doing. Crops rotted in the fields in Alabama when that state cracked down on immigration. Jeff Sessions should know this, but chooses not to.

    Where I would focus my concern is on companies chasing cheap labor or no labor. A CFO once said, “if a company could get by with hiring no employees, it would.” Retraining people , repurposing deteriorated assets and industries, involving business, community and government leaders in development are essential. The enemy is not immigration, although it does need to be governed better. Keith

    • Dear Keith,

      Most decent, reasonable folks are for tax reform and a better immigration system, but instead republicans are making these policies based on self interests, lies and phony economic models, where competent reforms are not possible.

      I remember where Lou Dobbs and his conservative friends killed President Bush’s attempt at a comprehensive plan to fix immigration in the USA. The country has been paying for this anti-immigration attitude ever since.

      This is despite the fact that the USA needs immigrants bigly. This is one sure way to boost the economy. Yet this thinking puts the lie to the republicans’ creating the bogeyman, where American workers are led to believe immigrants are taking their jobs.

      In some cases this may be true as when companies are allowed to hire foreigners with hb2 visas at much lower salaries than what Americans get paid. There should be a fix that companies have to pay 5% more than what Americans are typically paid for a certain set of skills and education.The president had vowed to fix this but I am not holding my breath.

      Hugs, Gronda

      • Gronda, the current leadership is enacting laws off rhetoric not data. It is hard to solve problems. Marco Rubio was part of a Gang of Eight that passed a reasonable immigration bill in the Senate, then the climate got so bad, he distanced himself from his greatest achievement during the 2016 election. Keith

  2. An excellent post, Gronda. It is uplifting to see the mean-spirited attacks against immigrants debunked in this way. Trump and his confederates remind me of Earl Fredrick Landgrebe, Indiana Congressman who was quoted as saying, “don’t confuse me with the facts” in the Watergate Hearings the day before Nixon resigned. Hopefully, the facts will mean more to the voters who can fix this problem at the ballot box.

    • Dear John Fioravanti,

      The republicans would like us to blame the other (fill in the blank) for any economic woes that people may be suffering, and this includes all immigrants

      The reality is two-fold. US companies are sitting on record profits and cash which benefit the business upper echelon executives, their investors and stockholders and then there is consideration for the consumer. The front line employees have been cut out of their fair share of the spoils for decades and especially the last decade.

      The president and his republican cohorts are pointing to stock prices soaring while forgetting that 1/2 of the American public owns no stock.

      Income inequality is at its worst ever in the USA.

      Still the economy is growing. My perception is, that what most Americans want is a return to decency as well as a growing economy. This is not the binary choice that republicans are planning to sell to the American peoples.

      We want both and that is why democrats will become the majority party members in the US Congress, post the 2018 November elections.

      Thanks a million times over for all of your support and for this reblog.

      Hugs, Gronda

  3. I am surprised that you approached politics in your blog. So often, people won’t take action but keep quite. Thanks for speaking up. Clearly you did a lot of research on this subject. It is very informative and useful information. Your graphic illustrations are precious! The resources used in this blog have some valid points. I hope our elected officials do the right things across party lines regardless of your President ‘s opinions!

    • Dear Gracie Bradford,

      Welcome,

      I didn’t used to work that hard to keep up with the politics of the day. But a little time with our President Trump has changed this laissez-faire attitude on my part. I am getting in the weeds to be a counter to the abundance of fake news that permeate the social websites. I figure 1000s of bloggers who focus on facts, decency, and compassion can make a difference.

      It would behoove the republicans to work with democrats to come up with an acceptable solution to both sides that can pass both houses in the US Congress. Killing programs like DACA, CHIP, aid to PR will not endear them to a lot of their voters.

      Hugs, Gronda

    • Dear Opher,

      You are so right!

      The anti-immigration republicans create “fake news”assertions designed to play on people’s fears and ignorance of the facts, so that they can enact policies that they want.

      Thanks a million times over for your support and for this reblog.

      Hugs, Gronda

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