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Trump’s hatred of immigrant kids could cost U.S. economy $215 billion

Donald Trump has spent the past several months, all the way up to his stunt meeting on Tuesday, holding the threat of deportation for 800,000 high-skilled young immigrants known as DREAMers above the heads of Democrats in Congress. His apparent hope was to get Democrats to agree to fund his racist border wall and other […]

By Matthew Chapman - January 10, 2018
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Donald Trump

Donald Trump has spent the past several months, all the way up to his stunt meeting on Tuesday, holding the threat of deportation for 800,000 high-skilled young immigrants known as DREAMers above the heads of Democrats in Congress.

His apparent hope was to get Democrats to agree to fund his racist border wall and other harebrained, nativist immigration schemes.

On Wednesday, a federal court blocked Trump from ending the program that gives the young immigrants work permits. But their status remains legally unclear, and Trump is jeopardizing their ability to securely live and work in America.

And that could hurt a lot more people than just those young people.

In an open letter to congressional leaders, a massive group of top business executives urged a quick legislative fix to the legal status of DREAMers, pointing out that if they are deported or go into hiding, the consequences for the economy could be disastrous.

“In addition to causing a tremendous upheaval in the lives of DACA employees, failure to act in time will lead to businesses losing valuable talent, cause disruptions in the workforce, and will result in significant costs,” the executives write.

The letter goes on to warn, “Studies by economists across the ideological spectrum have also determined that if Congress fails to act our economy could lose $215 billion in GDP.”

Among the over 100 signatories are the CEOs of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, IBM, Johnson & Johnson, Marriott, and Target.

This is nothing new. The corporate world — and even many corporate groups that support the GOP — tend to back immigration reform, because it does not help the economy when their workers might be thrown out of the country at any moment.

But this letter is a reminder, to a party that claims to support the growth of the economy, how catastrophically out of touch they are, and how they have let the needs of our country take a back seat to nationalist scaremongering.

Trump and his GOP cohorts need to stop playing with people’s lives and take real steps to help young immigrants who are growing our society and economy. The cruelty of using DREAMers as a political football to try to win concessions from Democrats has gone on long enough.

If other businesspeople can see this, Trump — the ostensible “businessman in chief” — ought to be able to do so, as well.


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