America’s future is brighter with more people here contributing to it. Yet today’s immigration system keeps too many decent, industrious people from fully participating in the American experience, to the detriment of our country as a whole. We are determined to change that. Our system should treat immigrants as fellow human beings with dignity and respect. We should ensure those who would come to do us harm are prevented from doing so while, simultaneously, welcoming the overwhelming majority of immigrants who will add immeasurable value to our economy and our culture. We can have more immigration, a stronger economy, and safer communities.
Ultimately, we want a system that welcomes immigrants who will contribute to American society.
68 percent of Americans believe our country’s openness to people from all over the world is essential to who we are as a nation—and even more believe legal immigration should stay at the current level or increase.
America is a nation of immigrants. Our culture is built on a foundation of immigrant genius. Immigrants invented blue jeans, basketball, and Budweiser. An immigrant wrote “God Bless America” while serving in the U.S. Army. Even the Statue of Liberty is an immigrant.
A clear process for legal status actually promotes assimilation by making it easier for immigrants and their children to find jobs, enroll in schools, and fully embrace the American Dream. Providing them with legal certainty and the ability to plan for their futures empowers them to work, study, join in public service, and recognize their potential to contribute to society.
Immigrants to America today are learning English at the same rate or faster than in the past.
Immigrants come to America to build a better life. This is the land of opportunity, and for more than 300 years immigrants from every corner of the globe have risked their lives for a chance to contribute to the fastest-growing economy in history. In fact, by increasing the customer base for U.S. companies and starting new businesses, immigrants create more new jobs than they fill.
Nearly half of all Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children. Google, AT&T, Pfizer—all created by immigrants. According to analysis by the Center for American Entrepreneurship, “Immigrant-founded Fortune 500 firms are headquartered in 33 of the 50 states, employ 12.8 million people worldwide, and accounted for $5.3 trillion in global revenue in 2016.”
But what about the use of public services like education, healthcare, and welfare? The fact is, most immigrants contribute more in taxes over their lifetimes than they use in government benefits. Bottom line: more immigration means more jobs, more innovation, and more growth in the long run.
Nearly half of all Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children.
America is a nation of laws. Unfortunately, our immigration system is so convoluted that complying with the law is virtually impossible. A result is 11 million undocumented immigrants living and working in the shadows, and five million more are waiting in line abroad. Nearly half of undocumented immigrants entered the country legally and overstayed their visa.
More immigration via more respectable laws also helps keep America safe. In fact, according to the National Academy of Sciences, “Immigrants are less likely than the native-born to commit crimes, and neighborhoods with greater concentrations of immigrants have much lower rates of crime and violence than comparable nonimmigrant neighborhoods.” Improving the openness, transparency, and efficiency of our immigration system will ease the burden on law enforcement so they can focus their time and resources on keeping out those who pose a genuine threat.
There are over seven million job openings in the U.S. Meanwhile, nearly four million qualified, potential immigrants are currently stuck on the visa wait list, instead of contributing to the American experience.
Immigrants add immeasurable value to our economy and our culture. We want a culture that welcomes immigrants who will contribute to American society because immigration is good.