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What Would You Change First About the Immigration System?

By April 24, 2009

Call for Comprehensive Immigration Reform

The U.S. immigration system is broken: President Obama has said that it's broken; Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano calls the system broken; America's two largest unions recently united over the broken immigration system; and the Senate Judiciary Committee is about to sit down and discuss how to improve the system. Everyone agrees that our immigration system is broken, and those who have endured the process as a visa beneficiary or petitioner are acutely aware of the problems inherent in the system. And what's more, everyone has an opinion on how best to fix it.

If you could change anything about the current immigration system, what would be the first thing that you would change? Everyone has an opinion. What's yours?

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images


April 24, 2009 at 9:47 pm
(1) joe says:

What should a highly skilled legal immigrant, waiting for a green card for more than 10 years do to be illegal and qualify for CIR?

April 25, 2009 at 1:28 am
(2) Buzzm1 says:

Mandate E-Verify for ALL employees, and ALL employers.

End birthright citizenship.

When criminal fugitive illegals are deported, their families need to go with them.

April 25, 2009 at 1:57 am
(3) Mark says:

20 million illegal immigrant
pay a fine of $3,000 per head and
make them legal. AND save our
Housing Market. Do the MathÖ

20,000,000 (illegal) x $3,000 = $60,000,000,000

Thatís 60 BILLION into US Economy.

(help me to help you Ė Jerry Maguire)

April 25, 2009 at 7:06 am
(4) CJ says:

You have to laugh at some comments some times. The thing to change is to make it simpler to understand for all and allow more foreigners to come here if they meet the already established criteria. Immigration has fueled innovation for the US since even before the United States formally existed. Why would you stop now when it is dire need?

April 25, 2009 at 10:52 am
(5) Anonymous says:

Make it possible to immigrate legally in a simple fashion without having to wait 20 years or more and without having to hire a sophisticated attorney and pay that attorney thousands of dollars. The current system is a full employment system for immigration lawyers (notice that there is a big shortage of them, even in a recession economy). Why are so many people “illegal”? Because it is too hard to be legal these days. If the legal system were easier to negotiate, fewer people would be “illegal.” Hardly anyone was “illegal” a hundred years ago. Ask yourself why Congress has been making the legal immigration system more and more complex, so that only very sophisticated lawyers can figure it out.

April 25, 2009 at 11:42 am
(6) baby says:

Personally I think people (FREE OF BOTH CRIMINAL RECORD AND ILLEGAL STAY RECORD FROM BACKGROUND CHECK) who are wealthy and knowledgeable ranked the first priority to immigrate. Therefore,

1) US-educated academic aliens who have
legally stayed in US for more than 8 years
with Master/doctorate degrees (in
Science,Technology,Engineering, Maths,
Medical, Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical science
academic majors),the country should
grant “Green card” to them if each of
these aliens pay non-refundable
immigration entry fee(US$10,000)to the
country. And after they
immigrate, separate payments in all kinds
of taxes should be imposed. Not only do
they bring extra cash and knowledge to the
country, they can also help to relieve
housing & banking crisis and indirectly
help to uplift the profits in various
retail business by buying houses, cars,
computers and household appliances. These
indirectly creates more jobs/tourists
visa incomes by promoting tourism if their
relatives/friends come to US to visit them
such as to increase the sales in hotels,
restaurants, flight tickets and shopping
malls. The cash inflow helps to reduce
economic recession and national debt.

2) The H-1B working visa program should be
cancelled to avoid visa frauds and to
eliminate both the time- and money-
consuming process caused to employers.
Also,employees will not find frustrated
to be tied up by employers all the time.
Instead, “buy a house (min $200,000) and
continue to own the house for 3-5 years
legally, get a green card”
should be legislated to attract the world
wealthy people (especially the US-educated
aliens)to US to create jobs and rescue the
housing crisis.

3)For illegal aliens, since they stay
illegally and they break the laws and they
should be punished without amnesty.
However, since millions of illegal
immigrants stay in the country, it is
impractical to put all of them in prison.
Personally, I think such illegal aliens
should pay the non-refundable immigration
entry fee (US$20,000)to the country and
then voluntarily leave US for 2 years and
then apply US immigration from their home
countries since they have stayed (but
illegal stay) in US for 5 years or more.
Again, each of these illegal aliens should
be free of criminal record in both US and
their home countries all the time before
immigration visa is issued. Once illegal
aliens immigrate, they should pay all kinds
of taxes. In case the illegal aliens don’t
want to leave the US for 2 years or they
don’t want to pay the non-refundable
immigration entry fee, their illegal status
will not be adjusted.

Again, all immigrants should have good moral conduct and to bring either cash or knowledge or both to US. Also, each immigrant should be responsible, financially independent individuals. As a result, economic recession will be easily to be recovered.

April 25, 2009 at 3:12 pm
(7) BronxAnon says:

Why don’t we legalize “deserving” illegals already in the country on conditions that they are not eligible to petition anybody, to claim any government subsidies (welfare, etc except emergencies) and to apply for citizenship. Legalization would allow them to work and become productive/contributing members of society (without being a burden) at the same time allow them to travel in and out of the country to visit families and friends back home (afterall a happy member makes an enthusiastic contributor). Whether we like it or not they’re already here. We can keep whining about the mistakes of the 1986 amnesty but we have to admit we made a very poor job at preventing others from keep sneaking in afterwards. If there’s a way there’s a will (or is it the other way around), anyway seems sound right as well. And I don’t think we can blame them either. Judging from what they’d gone through just to get here, it says a lot about their courage, desperation, determination and overall motive I’m sure a lot of us righteous citizens would not even dare think of doing just to be able to provide for our families.

April 26, 2009 at 2:05 pm
(8) Mike Johnson says:

An immediate plan of action to give permanent residency to legal immigrants (H1B) would boost the economomy in several ways. All those H1B holders who have been employed continously (without any break) for more than 3 years and if the current employer assures of employment for the immigrant employee for alteast another 3 years, and if the immigrant employee (under H1B) already possesses a house worth more than $150,000, Department of Homeland Security should immediately offer Green Cards to these immigrants by payment of a non refundable fee of $5000. These categories of H1B holders should be also given the option to fast track their application for Labor, I140 and 485 by payment of $1000 as premium processing.

April 26, 2009 at 3:47 pm
(9) Brittancus says:

Change nothing! Just rigidly enforce the 1986 Simpson/Mazzoli bill, the Immigration Reform & Control Act. Demand Politicians enforce the above and the E-Verify system. The job magnet will disappear and Illegal Immigrants will go home, opening jobs for Americans.

April 26, 2009 at 3:50 pm
(10) Brittancus says:

From the thousands of positives outburst on the Internet, the livid anger and the incessant frustration. I see a monolithic battle brewing between the open border entities and perhaps millions of anti-illegal immigrant individuals in the population. They have already recognized the anti-sovereignty politicians including Sen. Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi who in premeditatedly killed E-Verify, and are on the way to weakening the REAL ID act, and local police enforcement 247(g). Homeland Security Chief Napolitano is questioning ICE raids or anything that would stem the 13 to 20 million aliens who have settled here illegally. We cannot, should not reward any illegal activities. Any Democrat who condones this will be voted out of office. In most blogs, newspaper commentary or bulletin boards have displayed that perhaps only three in twenty voices would condone a path to citizenship.

Perhaps of any issue that has a terrible financial impact of American, illegal Immigration is going to cause the biggest perfect storm in Washington. AMNESTY will cause overpopulation in the future and rising taxes to pay for the employer low income hires, and all the foreign labor who sponsor future family members. It will be Armageddon on a small scale that will paralyze our countries financial future, once illegal immigrants tap into Social Security and pensions. Our health care system that has fallen behind European One-payer medical care, will be even further eroded by even more millions of illegal aliens pouring through the giant hole in our unenforced border laws.

April 26, 2009 at 4:51 pm
(11) Joseph Murphy says:

The illegal immigrants should be asked to leave the country immediately. The employers who employed these workers should also be penalised.
Regarding Legal Immigrants, temporary residents who are H1B visa holders were brought in to this country by their employers by going through all verificaiton and validation with regard to their educational qualification, work experience and other legal standards. Therefore these H1B residents, if they have been continuously employed with their firsr employer for more than 3 years, then they should be given the option to directly apply for Green Card without going through the hassle of being sponsored by the Employer. The US Administration can also collect a refundable (IOU for a 5 year term) fee from these applicants to the tune of $50,000. This will ensure a commitment from these applicants to stay in the country for atleast 5 years and contribute towards the economy.

April 27, 2009 at 7:32 am
(12) Pete Murphy says:

Rampant population growth threatens our economy and quality of life. Immigration, both legal and illegal, are fueling this growth. I’m not talking about environmental degradation or resource depletion. I’m talking about the effect upon rising unemployment and poverty in America.

I should introduce myself. I am the author of a book titled “Five Short Blasts: A New Economic Theory Exposes The Fatal Flaw in Globalization and Its Consequences for America.” To make a long story short, my theory is that, as population density rises beyond some optimum level, per capita consumption of products begins to decline out of the need to conserve space. People who live in crowded conditions simply donít have enough space to use and store many products. This declining per capita consumption, in the face of rising productivity (per capita output, which always rises), inevitably yields rising unemployment and poverty.

This theory has huge implications for U.S. policy toward population management, especially immigration policy. Our policies of encouraging high rates of immigration are rooted in the belief of economists that population growth is a good thing, fueling economic growth. Through most of human history, the interests of the common good and business (corporations) were both well-served by continuing population growth. For the common good, we needed more workers to man our factories, producing the goods needed for a high standard of living. This population growth translated into sales volume growth for corporations. Both were happy.

But, once an optimum population density is breached, their interests diverge. It is in the best interest of the common good to stabilize the population, avoiding an erosion of our quality of life through high unemployment and poverty. However, it is still in the interest of corporations to fuel population growth because, even though per capita consumption goes into decline, total consumption still increases. We now find ourselves in the position of having corporations and economists influencing public policy in a direction that is not in the best interest of the common good.

The U.N. ranks the U.S. with eight third world countries – India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Bangladesh, Uganda, Ethiopia and China – as accounting for fully half of the worldís population growth by 2050. It’s absolutely imperative that our population be stabilized, and that’s impossible without dramatically reining in immigration, both legal and illegal.

If youíre interested in learning more about this important new economic theory, I invite you to visit my web site at OpenWindowPublishingCo.com where you can read the preface, join in my blog discussion and, of course, purchase the book if you like. (It’s also available at Amazon.com.)

Please forgive the somewhat spammish nature of the previous paragraph. I just don’t know how else to inject this new perspective into the immigration debate without drawing attention to the book that explains the theory.

Pete Murphy
Author, “Five Short Blasts”

April 28, 2009 at 11:32 am
(13) Nicky says:

There is nothing to laugh at when I read some of these comments all I find when i look at some of them is disgust, Why dont people believe in God anymore nor live by his commandments and Laws, My God is a God of love and tender Mercies and some of you need to know that he is disgusted by you when you make some comments as if you think this world belongs to us your unconsiderate comments make you no better than than Murderers and the theives of this world you have no hearts.

I honestly think no one runs from good and when someone leaves there birth country to go to any foreign country to search for an opportunity its always for a good cause, wether it be because they were suffering or there children hunger we may never know but God knows it all they do no harm to come here and get an education and find a career to better themself and there families. Alot of Americans who are born and bred here and have the opportunity dont even want it they when do drugs and take up guns and sit all over the place and become worthless.So I think these people deserve a chance at life just as Jesus share our sins and shames we need to offer the same Love and Compassion.

Thank You and God Bless your souls.

April 28, 2009 at 12:44 pm
(14) peggy says:

I would have american families sponsor un-
documented families and put them on the road
to citizenship. Some of the nicest people
I have met are undocumented and I would love
to help them!!

April 28, 2009 at 12:57 pm
(15) Suz says:

Our curret system isn’t broken. The only thing wrong with it is it’s not being enforced.

Do you realize that if each of the 20 million illegal aliens were to be given amnesty each one could bring into this country about 10 relatives???? Do the math!

Secure our borders and enforce our immigration laws!

April 28, 2009 at 1:20 pm
(16) Danny says:

I would eliminate Anchor Babies.
I would give the illegal aliens in the country a work permit, NO citizenship!
I would ask them to pay a fine that as a whole covers the money spent creating a system to legalize them.
Secure the borders thru stationing troops there.
Create a guest worker program so if a U S company really needs workers they can enter the country legally so we know who they are, they can pay taxes and we can track them if they did something wrong!!

April 29, 2009 at 1:09 am
(17) John deware says:

Hey “Baby”, why don’t we ask all immigrant to pay for the crisis that hard working american created….for exmaple make immigrant pay for the american debt, and once they’re done paying we kick them out of the country, know ing that for a few years they have at least the insign honnors to ahve a close look at the greatest country on earth, and to almost achieve teh american dream???huuuumm, I mean that’s basically what you’re asking??
No offense, but those foreign student that perform usually better than their american counter-part, are already paying college bill at a higher fee than their american counter-part, and they will have to pay again 10000usd to ahve the insign honnor to start up company in california, employ what’s left of american college graduate.
I think you are over estimating the USA appeal.
For that price most chinese will go study in England and france…but if you want to bankcrupt university, discourage foreign investment, and kill innovation by putting protective tarrifs, you won’t be the only one, your past president has done so for the last 8 years…so let’s keep doing so.


May 5, 2009 at 1:54 pm
(18) angela says:

I think they should be legal. my husband is in the immigration process. he has been in mexico for 8 months waiting for them to make a decision,when he should be here with his family. he paid his taxes every year with a tax id number and has done everything that has been ask of him . if they all were to pay a fine just think how much money they would make if they paid 3 to 5 thousand dollars each. something needs to be done i am tired of waiting we have been in this process since 2006 how long does it take???????

January 25, 2010 at 4:01 pm
(19) Vamsi says:

Illegals OUT
Legals in US without Legal status OUT


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