Open Letter to Jared Kushner on Immigration Reform
As co-founder of Texans for Sensible Immigration Policy, I have been working for business-friendly immigration for at least ten years! It is encouraging to me that President Trump (your father in law), has asked you to do the same. I call it “sensible immigration policy.”
“TxSIP” represents the major construction associations in Texas, including Associated General Contractors.
I understand you are working with organizations like the US Chamber of Commerce and the Association of Builders and Contractors on behalf of President Trump to develop business friendly immigration policy.
American business owners, especially construction companies, are experiencing major labor shortages. The Associated General Contractors of America reports that 80% of contractors are having difficulty filling hourly craft positions. This workforce shortage is only expected to get worse as the baby boomers retire.
The President’s suggestions related to reforming legal immigration and transitioning to a merit-based system that allows people to come based on their skills are good. This would allow people to work the open jobs in our economy that Americans are not applying for.
It is also my hope and prayer you will encourage and support legislation to secure the border and find a solution for the 11 million undocumented already here. We need a system that requires a positive ID, allows them to earn legal status, and requires them to work for employers that deduct and match taxes!
Most of these undocumented immigrants are working and contributing to our economy. However, their lack of legal status often leads to abuse when unethical employers treat them as “independent subcontractors” to avoid paying employment taxes and providing benefits like workers' comp. The right kind of immigration reform would bring these workers out of the shadows and compel them and their employers to pay the proper taxes and follow all the rules like the rest of us.
It makes no sense to deport workers when our businesses are suffering from labor shortages. Please do everything you can to encourage Congress to create a method for undocumented workers who can pass background checks to earn their legal status so we can ID and tax them properly. This would greatly benefit the US economy and its citizens.
Jared, may God bless your efforts, and may He continue to bless America.