On Wednesday, Pres. Obama sent mixed messages to the American people. In the first half of the day, he once again expressed his support for the Senate-approved amnesty bill, S.744, that would issue more than 30 million lifetime work permits in the first decade. In the afternoon, he told a group of working-class Americans that he'd like to spend $600 million more to expand programs that train low-skilled American workers for high-tech jobs that pay more money.
A headline from The Daily Caller best explained the contrariety of the the President's two efforts: Obama: We need to train Americans -- and import their replacements
Obama: We need to train Americans -- and import their replacements
"I can't tell if Pres. Obama really wants to train Americans to actually fill jobs or if he just wants to give more money to schools. On the one hand, he is advocating major new spending for schools and businesses to train Americans for real jobs, instead of there being filled with foreign workers," NumbersUSA's Roy Beck told reporters.
"But at the same time, he is insisting on passing legislation to immediately and massively increase the number of foreign workers at all skill levels competing for U.S. jobs through lifetime work permits."
Pres. Obama's immigration statement came after he spent Tuesday discussing the issue with Evangelical leaders. They were obviously trying to capitalize on this week's religious holidays by connecting amnesty and open-border policies to moral obligations.
Like the President's statements, this effort is contradictory to church-going Evangelicals. A recent poll conducted by Pulse Opinion Research found that 74% of Evangelical voters believe that the federal government has a moral responsibility to help unemployed Americans find a job whereas only 36% believe the feds have a moral obligation to give work permits to illegal aliens and protect them from deportations.
Simply put, [S.744] would boost our economy, strengthen our security, and live up to our most closely-held values as a society.
-- Pres. Obama, Statement on April 16, 2014
The President continues to believe that an amnesty for at least 11 million illegal aliens and the doubling of work permits issued to new foreign workers each year would "boost the economy". It's logical to assume that when you increase the labor supply, you'll increase production, which will therefore "boost the economy". But at what expense?
Even the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office concluded that S.744 would increase unemployment and stagnate, or even depress, wages for most workers. Research by economist and Harvard professor George Borjas found that S.744 would reduce wages for native workers, but increase profits for business owners.
Which brings us back to Pres. Obama's speech on Wednesday evening:
[T]he stock market is doing great. Corporate profits are soaring. Folks at the very, very top are doing better than ever. But too many Americans, if they're lucky enough to have a job, are working harder and harder just to get by, much less to get ahead. For too many middle-class Americans, it feels as if the same trends that have been going on for decades are continuing. You're working hard, but wages flat-line, incomes flat-line, cost of everything else going up.
So we've got to reverse those trends. We've got to make sure that we have an economy that's not just growing from the top down -- because it doesn't really grow when it's just from the top down. We've got to have an economy where it grows from the middle class out, and from the bottom up, and everybody has a chance.
-- Pres. Obama, Speech in Pennsylvania, April 16, 2014
Pres. Obama says he wants to end this pattern, and yet, he continues to push for immigration policies that have been found by both economists and the CBO to do the exact opposite. Which option do you think he'll choose?
CHRIS CHMIELENSKI is the Director of Content & Activism for NumbersUSA