The prospects for legislation before the next election may be minimal, but it’s good that President Obama is making the case for comprehensive immigration reform. One can question his sincerity, of course. Since he knows that nothing is going to happen, he can aim to build support for Democrats among Hispanic voters, an increasingly significant group, without much risk of offending too many others. But his position on immigration reform happens to be right. Mending the immigration system is, as he said, an “economic imperative”, both to meet shortages of skilled labor and to bring the illicit migrant economy on to the books, thus helping to repair the tax base. Republicans richly deserve to be punished for their obduracy on the issue.
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