Independent Task Force on Immigration and America's Future: The Roadmap
This brief outlines the framework for MPI’s Independent Task Force on Immigration and America’s Future, a bipartisan task force of leaders and experts from key sectors concerned with and affected by immigration to the United States. It also highlights four key issues in immigration policy that the task force seeks to inform: (1) upholding the rule of law; (2) developing policies that meet immigration and national security needs; (3) managing immigration in ways that increase the nation’s economic competitiveness; and (4) promoting the economic and social integration of newcomers.
The authors begin by arguing that the current way in which U.S. immigration policy is applied undermines the fundamental rule of law, as evidenced by the growing population of unauthorized immigrants and the sharp increase in the employment of unauthorized immigrants in permanent rather than seasonal jobs. The brief then turns to challenges in immigration enforcement, suggesting that efforts to strengthen border security have done little to control unauthorized flows in the absence of effective interior enforcement strategies.
Post-9/11 national security initiatives also appear to be enforcing immigration controls at the expense of key national economic and social interests, according to the brief. Outdated immigrant admissions criteria and widespread visa processing delays pose additional obstacles to the social goal of family reunification and the economic goals of meeting labor market demands and fostering competitiveness. Finally, authors touch upon the often neglected issue of immigrant integration, calling attention to the reality that integration policies are fragmentary, poorly funded, and disproportionately costly for state and local governments.