There’s a skilled labor shortage in the United States, which President Donald Trump, Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), and Senator David Perdue (R-Ga.) are attempting to address with immigration policy reform.
The Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy Act, or RAISE Act, was introduced Wednesday, followed by a presser with Stephen Miller, a White House senior policy adviser. He was asked a series of agenda-driven questions by those in attendance, particularly from CNN’s Jim Acosta and the New York Times' Glenn Thrush.
Miller was explaining the point system RAISE uses to prioritize the distribution of work visas. In order to reduce “overall immigration numbers to limit low-skilled and unskilled labor entering the United States,” according to a White House press release, points will be awarded to applicants based on education, English-language ability, substantial job offers from the U.S., past achievements, and “entrepreneurial initiative.”
Thrush wanted Miller to explain “a correlation between low skilled immigration and the loss of jobs for native workers.” Miller then referenced the U.S. Civil Rights Commission and the Center for Immigration Studies, adding in the spirit of common sense, “Why do special interests want to bring in more low skilled workers?”
Thrush pointed out that's not what he was asking for, prompting Miller to retort, “It’s pretty clear, Glenn, that you’re not asking for common sense.” He later gave an example with which the Times might be able to identify:
“Glenn, maybe we'll make a carve-out in the bill that says the New York Times can hire all the less skilled, low-paid workers from other countries, and see how you feel then about low wage substitution. This is a reality that’s happening in our country.”
Miller then explained more seriously that handing out visas to low-skilled laborers from outside the U.S. makes no sense when America has no shortage of people for such jobs, stating that 25 percent of people between the ages of 25 and 54 are unemployed. He also gave a detailed analysis of how the influx of unskilled labor affects wages and economic growth.
Chris Salcedo thought on Thursday’s “Chris Salcedo Show” that maybe the question to reporters such as Thrush and Acosta should be, “Why is there prejudice against the high skilled workers who want to come to the United States?”