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“It’s about the economy. ” These are the words of President Obama on the immigration topic when he gave his state of the union address. But when this topic is brought up, so many mixed emotions are heard, felt, and even seen. On one side they say that legalizing illegal immigrants can help boost the economy and even complement the U. S workforce. On the other, they say that legalization will only entice more foreigners to cross the border illegally. Whatever the opinion, this is an important issue that has been brought up for a long time and no definitive solution has been implemented.
This issue is one that makes you wonder whether legalizing immigrants would be good, bad or the impact it would have on the economy. The legalization of illegal immigrants might take a long time, but when it happens, many good things can come from this. Many families will be brought together instead of being torn apart. Those that have special work skills will be able to find a job in their specialty. Millions of people will be able to file taxes. Many young adults will have the ability to go to college and develop skills that will help this country go forward.
People won’t have to do anything in secrecy; they will have the ability to do almost anything freely. Many good things can come from this legalization, but the question that remains is when? There are many people who argue that the legalization process is a bad idea. One of the biggest worries is that once they are legalized they will become eligible for all the benefits a citizen is eligible for. Another worry is that they would become competition for the natural born citizens, most likely leaving them without a job.
If an immigrant becomes legalized their relatives won’t necessarily have to “wait at the end of the line”, turning 11 million illegal immigrants into an unknown quantity. These are just some of the reasons that people are against the legalization of illegal immigrants. When Obama talks about the issue he assures that he is doing it primarily in order to help the economy recover. But when people talk about it, they say that the legalization process won’t help the economy. But according to Hinojosa-Ojaeda’s studies, if immigrants are legalized this will help boost he economy and get the country out of the recession it’s still in. Those that get legalized will be able to get taxed on wages earned and have the ability to file taxes. Laura Hill (Immigrant Legalization: Assessing the Labor Market Effects) has conducted studies in which she found that many undocumented immigrants already file federal taxes and pay sales and payroll taxes. She also states that “legalization is not a bad idea; I am saying that we shouldn’t expect the economy to blossom because of a legalization program. ” The words are almost identical, but on different sides of the fence.
In 1986, the US offered a large scale amnesty which legalized over 3 million illegal immigrants. There was a moment after this that the economy boomed, but there was also more unauthorized entries made by illegal immigrants. There are many opinions that support, and many that are against it. The end result will never be known until some form of solution is taken seriously. In time we’ll know whether the course taken was good, bad or if it even helps the economy. In the end the real question is, should the United States provide a path to legalization for illegal immigrants? Steven Lazo
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