Immigration policy has been the center of American development throughout the country’s history. The laws of immigration today, however, are still wildly viewed as convoluted, oppressive, and destructive to American progress. The most significant reform of federal immigration policy in recent history took place under President Lyndon B. Johnson. The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 abolished the quota system that only allowed a specified number of immigrants to enter the country per year.
Both Democrats and Republicans agree that the immigration system is in need of serious reform. Recently inaugurated for a second term, President Barack Obama took up the issue in his inaugural address, saying “Our journey is not complete until we find a better way to welcome the striving, hopeful immigrants who still see America as a land of opportunity, until bright young students and engineers are enlisted in our workforce rather than expelled from our country.”
By expanding the population’s size and potential, the economy will undoubtedly grow. Many undocumented immigrants in this country have the potential, and are ready, to contribute a great deal, ranging from small business to labor to engineering and innovating. The technology sector would expand significantly, due to increasing numbers of foreign students enrolling in engineering schools. Instead of being forced to leave the country, they will be able to develop it.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney claimed that this is an issue that will be dealt with early on in President Obama’s second term. The economy could benefit from better immigration policy in regard to its stability and strength as it recovers.