Immigration Reform

Tom supports immigration reform that strengthens border security and offers a demanding but fair path to legal status for millions of undocumented immigrants and their families who are already living and working here.  Basic principles of reform include:

  • Citizenship path for undocumented immigrants already in the United States contingent on border security and visa holder tracking improvements providing for permanent residence status for undocumented immigrants only after legal immigrants waiting for a current priority date receive their permanent residence status and a different citizenship path for agricultural workers through an agricultural worker program.
  • Business immigration system reforms, including reducing current visa backlogs and fast track permanent residence for American university immigrant graduates with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering or math.
  • Expanded employment verification system for all employers to confirm work authorization.
  • Improved work visa options for low-skill workers including an agricultural worker program

The bi-partisan Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 (S.744) presents a good place to start which among its salient features allowed for acceptance of immigrants according to a merit-based system based on professional skills, family relations, and work history in the U.S.

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that immigration reform could stimulate our economy, increase GDP, and reduce federal deficits by $200 billion over 10 years.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen stated in February 2017:

Labor force growth has been slowing in the United States. It's one of several reasons along with slow productivity growth for the fact that our economy has been growing at a slow pace. Immigration has been an important source of labor force growth. So slowing the pace of immigration probably would slow the growth rate of the economy.

Tom supports proposals that would reform our immigration system to meet the needs of an innovation-driven 21st century economy by, in part, making it easier and more welcoming for entrepreneurial and highly skilled immigrants educated at U.S. colleges and universities to stay here and create jobs after graduation.

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