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Feds recognize immigrants' contribution to economy

Immigration reform is an extremely import issue right now in the United States. While several states, including South Carolina, have been passing laws that put more restrictions on immigration, there are leaders in the federal government calling for immigration reform that would make it easier for immigrants to live and work in the country.

A report released last month by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce encouraged the federal government to take steps towards immigration reform, particularly in the direction of encouraging more immigrant entrepreneurs, which could help spur economic growth and create jobs. A survey shows that 68 percent of Americans polled also support such a move.

Some point to the large number of successful companies founded by immigrants, many of which employ thousands or even tens of thousands of employees. This includes the Internet search giant Google, the finance behemoth Capitol One Financial and the telecommunication service provider Comcast.

Other prominent examples include the auction website eBay, which owes its 1995 genesis to a French immigrant, retailer Kohl's, whose 1962 originator is a Polish immigrant and YouTube, the video posting website which was created by a Taiwanese immigrant in 2005.

The Chamber of Commerce said it has supported immigration reform measures, which would encourage others with such entrepreneurial plans to come to the United States. It also supports measures that would help make sure that all American workers are protected by labor laws.

The Chamber of Commerce stated that only by allowing undocumented workers currently in the country to come out of the shadows can such workers find protection against unscrupulous employer exploitation.

Sources: Desert News, "Immigration reform may spur economic growth, U.S. Chamber says," Elizabeth Stuart, Jan. 26, 2012; U.S. Chamber of Commerce Press Release, "U.S. Chamber of Commerce Statement on Comprehensive Immigration Reform," Jan. 23, 2012

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