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Chamber of Commerce for comprehensive immigration reform

U.S. Chamber of Commerce president Thomas J. Donohue gave his annual state of business address on January 10, and said the following about immigration reform (excerpted). I’d say he is calling for comprehensive reform, including normalizing the status of undocumented immigrants.

…..But we still need immigrants. We are locked in a global competition for the world’s best talent. This is the competition that will separate the economic leaders from the laggards in the 21st century.

The Chamber is already teaming up with the labor unions, faith organizations and ethnic groups, and law enforcement to build a coalition for comprehensive reform.

We believe immigration reform should include the following inter-related components:

We need to secure our borders. It is imperative that people and commerce flow efficiently and lawfully through our nation’s ports and across our borders.

In addition, our laws must be revised to welcome needed labor and talent into our economy through thoughtfully-designed guest worker programs. This includes provisional visas for lesser-skilled workers. It also includes expanding the caps for high-skilled visas, and, expanding green cards for foreign nationals who graduate from our colleges and universities with advanced degrees.

We also need a workable, reliable national employee verification system. And, we need to provide a path out of the shadows for the 11 million undocumented immigrants who live in the United States today—provided that they meet strict conditions.

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