Jacob Lew, the US Treasury Secretary, declared on Sunday that he believes that immigration reform will be adopted in spite of the opposition of a number of members of the Republican Party. The US Senate last week passed a controversial immigration bill that offers a pathway to citizenship for around 11 million illegal immigrants, with the House of Representatives, which is controlled by the Republicans, now debating the measure.
Conservatives have been criticizing the Senate’s version of the immigration overhaul, vowing that any version delivered by the House of Representatives will need to have undergone major changes, but their grandstanding has not impressed Treasury Secretary Lew, who is confident that the reforms, which have been given strong backing from President Barack Obama – will end up becoming law.
“I think the immigration reform will pass,” Lew told a conference in Aspen in Colorado. “We need to do this for the sake of the economy. We have to do it because it’s the right thing to do. We have to do it because it’s the smart thing to do. We are a nation of immigrants. You look at the Fortune 500 companies, 40 percent of them were started by immigrants or children of immigrants.”
The Treasury Secretary also pointed out that the solvency of Medicare and social security could be prolonged by the taxes paid by immigrants who were newly legalized, adding that he was optimistic about economic growth in the United States.