Joe Biden has promised to make it easier for foreigners to legally immigrate to the United States -- and also amnesty the 11 million illegal immigrants currently here. "It makes no sense for us not to do that," Biden told Telemundo in a recent interview.
But does expanding immigration really make sense right now?
The economy is still reeling from COVID-19. Here in Michigan, the unemployment rate skyrocketed from 3.6% in February to 24% in April, the same month Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced shelter-in-place orders. It has since fallen to 8.7%t -- a big improvement, but still far too high. Importing even more foreign workers would reduce the number of jobs available to Michiganders and put downward pressure on wages.
That's why Michiganders must send Republican John James to the Senate. If Democrats take the White House, only a Republican Senate can defend American workers against Biden's immigration agenda. And the Michigan race could prove pivotal in determining which party controls the upper chamber.
Michigan voters understand that importing more workers during an economic crisis makes no sense. A poll conducted this summer by Zogby Analytics found that Michigan voters support reducing immigration and guest worker visas during the downturn by a two-to-one margin. The same poll found that voters believe limiting admission of immigrants and guest workers would "improve the changes of laid-off American workers being rehired" by a 10-point margin.
Put simply, Michigan voters recognize that expanding immigration isn't prudent right now.
In this context, Biden's immigration plan is especially baffling.
Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, about 1 million new legal immigrants were coming to the United States each year -- even under the supposedly draconian immigration policies of Donald Trump. Joe Biden's policies would increase that already staggering number by hundreds of thousands of people each year.
Immigration expansion threatens wages in Michigan and across America. Indeed, a 10% increase in the number of workers any given field could mean at least a 3%t drop in wages.
This is simple economics. The more workers vying for jobs, the less employers need to pay to fill positions.
Immigration also places a strain on social services. After all, immigrants -- legal or not -- send their kids to school. They rely on firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical services. They visit the emergency rooms. It's no wonder why Biden's immigration plan could cost taxpayers more than $200 billion by 2024.
Increasing the number of immigrants in the United States won't do any Americans any favors, especially right now.
Michigan voters should not underestimate their influence -- they could very well determine which party controls the Senate. Polling shows a tight race between James, a businessman and combat veteran who has forcefully denounced illegal immigration, and incumbent Gary Peters, who has repeatedly voted to protect sanctuary cities and import more guest workers.
Senator Peters would simply rubber stamp Biden's agenda. The best way to protect Michiganders' jobs is to make sure Peters loses his.