Immigration and today's GOP

The modern Republican Party holds many positions which threaten our country and it’s citizens. The GOP’s refusal to even acknowledge climate change and their continued cult-like belief in trickle down economics are two that come to mind.

But the Republican’s illogical position on immigration may be the most frustrating.

What are the facts about immigration?

How the Trumps came to immigrate to America

Friedrich Trump arrived from Germany in 1885 as an unaccompanied minor and by today’s standards would have been deported.

After living in New York City for awhile he left for the Pacific Northwest where he did quite well. He then married and attempted to go back to Germany to stay in 1904.

But the German authorities didn’t want him because he had skipped military service in Germany and they deported him. After returning to the US and settling in the Bronx, Fredrick Christ Trump was born and he would become Donald’s father.

Right now, the 44 million foreign born people in the US is 13.7 percent of the population. The historic high of 15 percent was in the early years of the 20th Century. Among 50 of the wealthiest nations the US admits only 5 per 1,000 people while Canada admits 8 per 1,000 and Australia 14 per 1,000.

Even at our nation’s Southern border, the amount of people crossing illegally or asking for asylum has been at or near historic lows.

There are issues to be addressed to improve the control over who does and does not enter the U.S. But, build a wall? Time and time again the evidence shows that most people here illegally do not cross our borders but over stay their visas.

In 2013 the Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill with significant bipartisan support. It was never considered in the GOP-controlled House. It seems clear that those running the Republican Party want to use the issue of immigration to stir up fears of “the other” in their base rather than address the problems and offer more opportunities.

The GOP position ignores the fact that the pressure for immigration is only going to grow for several reasons.

Perhaps most important is how our nation will need immigration for solid economic reasons because of declining birth rates. The U.S. birth rate has been falling dramatically and we are now at the point we will not meet replacement levels.

Where will the workers come from who drive our economy, pay the taxes, contribute to Social Security, and buy the goods to keep the country going if not from immigration?

Louis Harpster