Immigration Reform

Solutions for the problem of uncontrollable illegal immigration must address all aspects of the issue if future remedies are to be effective.  Firstly, the cause of the problem must be recognized.  Overpopulation in Latin American countries has been the major cause of the problem, especially Mexico, where the population has increased from 20 million in 1940 to about 115 million today.  By comparison, if the U. S. population had increased at the same rate, there would be over 800 million people living here today instead of 320 million. Half of Mexico's population lives below the Mexican poverty level of $2.00 per day per person. In practical terms, the only alternative these 50 million people had, until the onset of the recent economic downturn, was to work in and/or migrate to the United States if they wished to improve their living standards.   Even under the best circumstance (i.e., slightly more than the two children per family now occurring), Mexico's population will not level off until after it exceeds 150 million or more inhabitants.

A managed nationwide guest worker program must be instituted, monitored, and controlled.   Run by the U. S. Department of Labor (DOL), potential employers would contract with the DOL to hire guest workers that would be paid at least the minimum wage, with mandated payroll deductions for income tax and social security and guarantees that fair labor standards practices will be enforced.   A special Social Security program should be established for guest workers only that would enable them to earn credits for retirement to be paid only in Mexico at age 67 after their 40 quarters of earned contributions have been credited to their accounts.  If the Mexican government cooperates, half of the U. S. income taxes collected from these guest workers would be remitted to the Mexican Treasury to pay for their and their families' health care and the education of their children in Mexico.  The Mexican government would assume full financial responsibility for the health care needs of their citizens while they are employed in the United States.  Other countries could establish similar programs for their guest workers in the U. S., but would have to pay or guarantee reimbursement of their cost of transportation to and from the United States.  Canada has a successful guest worker program that should be studied and used as a modified model for the U. S. program.

Regarding the guest worker program, properly identified and certified workers only (no dependents) would be admitted to work a maximum of eight months annually in the United States.  Guest workers would be permitted to work only for qualified employers under contract with the U. S. Department of Labor.  A vigorous inspection program using Federal inspectors should be instituted to ensure that the guest workers are properly treated by their employers.  Employers guilty of serious fair labor standard violations would be severely punished and permanently barred from further participation in the program.  Guest workers must return to Mexico for the remainder of the year at the end of their periods of temporary employment in the United States.   They would be permitted to work a maximum of twenty five consecutive calendar years in the United States in order to accumulate the minimum of  40 quarters of covered employment for their  Social Security pensions that will be paid at age 67 in Mexico.   Those workers desiring to obtain U. S. citizenship status would have to undergo the normal naturalization process.   Marriage to a U. S. citizen would be prohibited for all guest workers while they are participating in the program.  Pregnant guest workers would be immediately returned to Mexico and barred from further participation in the program until their youngest child’s fifth birthday.   Finally, the practice of late term pregnant Mexican women entering the United States to give birth and thereby obtain U. S. citizenship for their newborn children should be banned until a constitutional amendment redefining eligibility for citizenship for such children is enacted. 

Finally, selected qualified aliens that are residing and permanently gainfully employed in the United States also would have priority for obtaining green cards under a special naturalization program, but must adhere to all other requirements except returning to their home countries four months annually and must apply for permanent residency.  Dependents of aliens currently residing illegally in the U. S. whom are not U. S.citizens must return to their home countries with their parents if they have not applied for permanent resident alien status (green cards) or temporary residency status. Children of illegal immigrants whom are U. S.born citizens under the age of 18 must have legal U. S, guardians appointed to accept responsibility for their care until they reach age 18 if they remain here after their parents departure. Families must be humanely treated and not be involuntarily separated.

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