The Tim “endorsed by Donald Trump” Michels TV ad on illegal immigration (“no benefits, no driver’s licenses and no tuition”) reveals yet another reason why he’s wrong for Wisconsin.
Why would a gubernatorial candidate want to make life harder for immigrants when the summer 2022 CEO survey by Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce reported that 85% of employers have trouble hiring employees and 81% cite the main reason as either "lack of qualified workers” or “labor shortage.”
By whatever means, most immigrants come to America to work. Research suggests that, as a group, their children do better economically than those of American-born parents. Yet as Tom Still notes in his Aug. 21 column “Labor Shortage: No easy fix for complex problem," Wisconsin attracts fewer immigrants than other states. He also gently suggests one reason is the sense that Wisconsin is not a welcoming place for people who “embrace 'live-and-let-live' views on social issues.”
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Michels is another of those Republicans who stir up anti-immigrant fervor and block meaningful immigration policy reform. They do so for short-term political advantage. But it does long-term detriment to America. Electing him governor would be a serious step backward for the economic health of our state.
Howard Landsman, Madison