Immigration Reform Isn’t Republican or Democratic — It’s Commonsense

November 25, 2013. An op-ed by Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty of Connecticut about the benefits of immigration reform. Esty is a Democrat, but as she stresses, this should not be a Democratic or Republican issue; it is an American issue. In making the case, she cites FPI’s report on small business owners:

Since taking office, I’ve had the honor of meeting with business owners from around our district and our state. They are eager to share with me their successes as well as their concerns. When I ask what I can do to support them as they grow their businesses and create jobs, many say the same thing: Congress must fix our broken immigration system.

From the labs of our universities, to construction sites in our towns, to the small businesses on our Main Streets, and every job in between, immigrants make critical contributions to our economy here in Connecticut. As of 2011, almost half a million immigrants live in our state, and they make up more than 16 percent of our workforce.

Nationwide, immigrant-owned small businesses employed more than 4 million people in 2007, and 18 percent of small business owners in the United States are immigrants, according to the Fiscal Policy Institute.