Give President Joe Biden grudging credit. Few if any presidential candidates have delivered on their campaign promises with such machine gun fire-like speed as President Biden.
If only the newly elected president had paused to ask himself who his kept promises are helping, he’d be better off in the long run. Someone among his confidants should remind President Biden that the 2022 mid-term elections are right around the corner, that his honeymoon period will soon end, that he’ll have to cope with his sure-to-be disappointed majority and the furious 75 million who voted for President Trump. President Biden’s proposed massive amnesty that overshadows in its scope the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) by a factor of ten will rightly elicit Americans’ ire. IRCA granted amnesty to about 2.7 million migrants; if the Biden administration prevails, it could oversee amnesty for about 25 million unlawfully present aliens.
Precisely as President Biden vowed, on Day One of his administration, he sent an outline to Congress titled the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 (USCA) that will grant amnesty to unknown millions of illegal aliens currently residing in the United States. Estimates of the number of aliens range from 12 to 22 million. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) introduced the proposed legislation in the Senate. The consequences, direct and indirect, of the Biden administration’s swift, but rash, actions are mostly hush, hush – that is, the mainstream media has kept the aspects that are patently harmful to citizens out of their stories and broadcasts.
The planned legislation has several layers, all of which include eventual citizenship for existing migrants, among them farm workers, temporary protected status holders, and deferred action for childhood arrivals recipients. Annual legal immigration, already in excess of 1 million, would be increased as would the total of visa lottery winners and refugee admissions.
That’s not all! Foreign students who graduate with science, technology, math and engineering degrees (STEM) would be awarded Green Cards, and the nearly 4 million foreign nationals on the waiting list for employment or family-based visas would be fast-tracked. The India Times reported specifically that President Biden will increase the number of high-skilled visas, including the H-1B, and eliminate the employment-based visa country cap. Both measures would benefit tens of thousands of Indian tech workers.
If enacted, USCA’s immediate result will be work and travel permission for the first five years for the amnestied aliens, bad news for the tens of millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans. While the COVID-19 virus rages on, Americans’ employment prospects remain few.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in December 2020, 15.8 million persons, 1 million more than in November, were unable to work because their employer closed or lost business because of the pandemic. Americans either didn’t work at all or they worked fewer hours than the previous month. Moreover, the pandemic prevented more than 4.6 million persons from seeking employment in December.
The open borders approach has created a showdown between the Biden administration and U.S. citizens who favor stricter immigration guidelines that put their needs first. Generally, restrictionists believe that the U.S. has an ethical obligation to open its borders to at least some of the world’s neediest migrants, but that a country’s own citizens should have a moral priority over others. At low enough incoming flows, migrants can be admitted without harming a nation’s own citizens.
But President Biden’s plan to grant amnesty to illegal aliens and to invite in millions of overseas workers disregards Americans in need and, in a time of unprecedented employment and health insecurity, adds to the nation’s already high anxiety.
Vanderbilt University Centennial Professor of Philosophy John Lachs wrote: “Throughout history, acting in self-interest for one’s own people generally has not been considered morally selfish.” Lachs cited Roman, Greek and Hindu philosophers who agree. From the Middle Ages, Hebrew teaching indicated this direction: “The general rule is that the poor of your town come before the poor of any other town…. As between relatives and poor strangers, relatives come first.” Only the most radical among us, which for the moment includes the members of President Biden’s administration, should disavow “Americans First.”