With momentum for real immigration reform in the US, why resort to old, stupid ideas?


Well, nobody expected immigration reform that quickly. The New York Times reports that Congress is due to vote on an immigration bill this week. The only problem is that it’s an old bill, and a bad one at that.

Representative Lamar Smith, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, is offering a tweaked proposal of the so-called STEM Jobs Act: It basically increases visas for immigrants with science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) backgrounds. Except it does so at the expense of the diversity lottery, which allows entry to the US for people from countries with lower rates of immigration. The Times makes this case against the idea:

Here’s the math: add 55,000 new visas for immigrants with advanced STEM degrees. Take away 55,000 diversity visas. A zero-sum game, in pro-immigrant disguise. …If the Republicans are going to offer real immigration reform, they will have to do better than this.

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