Letter: Lamm hits the right notes on labor, immigration

Former Colorado Gov. Richard Lamm’s opinion article in the Aug. 13 Denver Post, “Just whose labor are we protecting?” was bold in its reflection on America’s labor policy. His question: “What policies are best for the American worker?”

A few of his observations: The vast majority of immigrants come because of whom they are related to, not for their skills; low-skilled immigrants reduce wages for low-skilled Americans; our need is for more jobs, not more bodies; and employers love immigrants because they provide subsidized labor. In 2000, the United States had 40 million employment-age workers not in the labor force; today, 92 million are not working. We minimize the number of skilled and talented immigrants by preferring “family unification.” We have been bringing in immigrants more quickly than the economy can provide jobs, thereby hurting American workers. The more people competing for existing jobs, the lower the wages, and any country should owe its first duty to its own poor.

An additional concern he did not address is the massive tax-free, under-the-table, underground economy that has exploded due to illegal immigration.

Lamm is simply asking for a respectful and rational debate on our labor policy. Hopefully those who disagree with the governor will refrain from anger, political correctness and especially name-calling.

Floyd Diemoz

Glenwood Springs