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Ugly Subtext to Wall Street Republicans' Immigration Support

Reported by Judy - May 20, 2006

The continuing split between Republicans on immigration -- Wall Street Republicans who want to allow more immigration to keep wages down versus grass-roots racist Republicans who are afraid of people with non-white skin -- has its amusing moments. What progressive doesn't like to see members of that party at each other's throats? But there's a subtext to even the Wall Street Republicans' position on immigration that is troubling.

The ugly subtext was on display Saturday (May 20, 2006) on Neil Cavuto's "Cavuto on Business" in yet another discussion on immigration. Jim Rogers, author of Hot Commodities, has generally taken the position of allowing the 11 million immigrants in this country illegally to stay. It's a position that's pretty close to that of liberal Greg Hymowitz, of Entrust Capital.

Cavuto tried to breathe new life into this tired topic by discussing a report by Tim Kane of the Heritage Foundation, although he never bothered to go into any sort of detail about what the report actually says, other than the fact that it claimed that it would cost the nation $30 billion if all the illegal immigrants were made citizens and became eligible for welfare.

Rogers and Hymowitz both noted that immigrants come here to work, and Rogers criticized Kane's study as 'tremendously flawed." He added, “You know who goes on welfare? Americans go on welfare. ... I’d much rather have the people coming in who work hard than the people running out there to get on welfare."

Rogers' comments conjured up a lot of stereotypes about people on welfare -- about how well people on welfare supposedly live, how easy it is to get on to welfare, that people on welfare don't want to work, and on and on.

The fact is, most people on welfare are mothers with children. Government policy used to be to support mothers so that they could stay home and raise their children. That's what all the conservatives want -- for themselves, but not for poor children.

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