On July 12th, 2012, the White House issued an interesting list of 10 points prepared by Jason Furman, Principal Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, and Danielle Gray, Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, showing how immigration is beneficial to the welfare of the United States.
The 10 points mention that immigrants include not only unskilled workers, but also highly qualified engineers, scientists, doctors, and university professors. In fact, according to Furman and Gray “…immigrants represent 33 percent of engineers, 27 percent of mathematicians, statisticians, and computer scientists, and 24 percent of physical scientists. Additionally, according to the Partnership for a New American Economy, in 2011, foreign-born inventors were credited with contributing to more than 75 percent of patents issued to the top 10 patent-producing universities.”
The study American Made: The Impact of Immigrant Entrepreneurs and Professionals on U.S. Competitiveness, by the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), shows that immigrants represent the largest number of small businesses in the US. The study shows “…the striking propensity of immigrant[s] to start and grow successful American companies, particularly in the technology field”. Just in 2007, these businesses employed over 4 million people, and have continued to generate over $776 billion per year.
The study’s findings favor immigration reform and an open policy toward legal immigration, but they also state that there are “…current restrictions on skilled immigrants [that] are likely to result in less job creation and innovation for America.”
Immigrants have also started 25 percent of all public US companies backed by venture capital investors, such as eBay, Yahoo, and Google, this according to
Probably the most important point in the list is the one referring to the Dream Act. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office considers the Dream Act as a great tool to successfully reduce the US deficit. How? Immigration Reform Legislation would lower the federal deficit by $2.2 billion over a period of 10 years, simply because of the increase in tax revenues immigrants would now be able to contribute to the US economy.
During a recent naturalization ceremony held during the first week of July, President Obama declared:
“The lesson of these 236 years is clear – immigration makes America stronger. Immigration makes us more prosperous. And immigration positions America to lead in the 21st century. And these young men and women are testaments to that. No other nation in the world welcomes so many new arrivals. No other nation constantly renews itself, refreshes itself with the hopes, and the drive, and the optimism, and the dynamism of each new generation of immigrants. You are all one of the reasons that America is exceptional. You’re one of the reasons why, even after two centuries, America is always young, always looking to the future, always confident that our greatest days are still to come.”
Whether we remember it or not, ours is a nation of immigrants, and that is what has made the US the largest and most powerful economy in the world. Are we now, through xenophobia and racism, willing to turn our backs on a successful future?