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Economy: Increase immigration for economic growth?

March 24, 2011 |  1:59 pm

Gov. Rick SnyderIllegal immigrants, according to comments on our discussion boards, are a large factor in why California is in the fiscal mess it's in. They've bankrupted our state, commenters say, by using up all our resources such as health clinics and public schools, and we can't afford to keep subsidizing outsiders when we can't even afford to take care of our own.

On Wednesday Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) must have made these folks happy when he flip-flopped on his position regarding comprehensive immigration reform, saying more money ought to be devoted to protecting the border, despite those costs being at an all-time high.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder takes a different view, at least for his state. He'd like to increase immigration and foster diversity. This would be "a selling point for businesses that can spur economic growth in the state," reports the Detroit News [via Faith In Public Life]. Speaking at "Michigan Muslim Capitol Day," Snyder said, "We need to celebrate diversity; it's one of our strengths." He also encouraged legal immigration, particularly those involving foreign-born natives with graduate degrees.

In a recent editorial, "Immigration, state by state," the board pointed to several new immigration proposals from states including Utah, Oklahoma and South Carolina, and urged the federal government to step up and create one cohesive policy for immigration. In Friday’s Op-Ed pages, Tamar Jacoby, president of ImmigrationWorks USA, argues that although only the federal government can fix the immigration system, efforts by individual states could prod Capitol Hill to comprehensive reform.

RELATED:

Arizona's Rep. Jeff Flake shifts support from comprehensive reform

Immigration, state by state

The conversation: Three views on immigration policy

Working on immigration

An immigration reform window opens

In immigration reform, arguing against workplace raids

--Alexandra Le Tellier

Photo: Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder. Credit: Emily Zoladz / the Grand Rapids Press

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