The mass entry of 10 million illegal immigrants during the administration or President George W. Bush is grievously unfair to our millions of high-school dropouts who desperately need a job to get started building a life. At least two-thirds of the illegal immigrants in the United States, as well as those who would benefit by the president's guest-worker plan, likewise do not have a high school education, so they are in direct competition with native-born Americans.
The Center for Immigration Studies has just released a report showing how immigrants (legal and illegal) who arrived during George W. Bush's presidency have caused a massive displacement of native-born workers. The number of young - ages 16 to 34 - native-born American men who were employed declined by 1.7 million, while over the same period, the number of new male immigrant workers increased by 1.9 million.
If jobs held by new immigrant males aged 16 to 34 were made available to jobless native-born males, then the job deficit among our native-born males would be completely eliminated. America doesn't need more high school dropouts; we have plenty of our own. Employers are substituting new immigrant workers for young native-born workers. New immigrants account for most of the growth in the number of employed people in the United States.
The Center for Immigration Studies report also shows that agriculture is no reason to permit or invite more illegal workers because only 4 percent of them work in agriculture. That means, for every illegal worker in agriculture, 24 are illegally employed in non-farm industries.
So why don't the agriculture employers hire illegal immigrants who are already in this country instead of demanding that we import even more workers from other countries?
Furthermore, a large share of new immigrants are employed in the underground economy, which means they are paid in cash and the employer evades the basic labor standards that have been the norm in our economy for many years.
The failure of President Bush to carry out his constitutional duty to "take care that the laws be faithfully executed," e.g., the laws against illegal entry, illegal hiring and illegal documents, gives the lie to his famous boast that he is a compassionate conservative. His failure shows that he is not only not conservative; he is not compassionate.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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