Vice President, Immigration Policy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
May 11, 2023
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce—together with over 430 business associations from all 50 states—launched the LIBERTY Campaign to secure our borders and modernize our antiquated, broken legal immigration system.
The campaign kicked off in early May with a letter to Congress that called upon elected officials to address the crisis at our border and the immigration-related critical workforce shortage before year’s end. The situation on our southern border remains a mess and is showing no signs of improving in the absence of any meaningful action being taken by our elected leaders. Congress cannot stand by and let this situation deteriorate even further.
What’s Going On?
The situation on our southern border can be described in one word: chaos. For the first six months of this fiscal year, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has tallied 1,431,964 border encounters on the southwest border. On a year-over-year basis, that’s 133,796 more encounters than over the same period last year, which was a record-setting year with regard to the southwest border crossings. These conditions on our southern border are unsustainable. History has shown these problems will not solve themselves, and Congress cannot afford to delay addressing these issues any longer.
Our current immigration system fails to meet the needs of businesses and imposes significant costs on American communities and our economy. Companies are experiencing significant workforce shortages, and as a result, companies of all sizes and across a host of industries are wrestling with the chronic problems caused by their inability to adequately tap into global talent to meet their needs.
These issues can only be addressed with bipartisan Congressional action, and the LIBERTY Campaign is committed to working with all members of Congress who want secure borders and a modernized legal immigration system.
Majority of Voters Support Increased Border Security, Immigration Reform
The vast majority of American voters—both Republican and Democrat—support policies to strengthen border security and make it easier to immigrate to the U.S., according to a recent Fox News poll.
Three-quarters of voters favor making it easier to immigrate (73%) and increasing the number of border agents at the southern border (74%).
LIBERTY Campaign’s Role
The LIBERTY Campaign spans many American industries, including healthcare, manufacturing, restaurants, hospitality, retail, construction, agriculture, engineering, and food processing, among others.
The LIBERTY campaign calls upon Congress to enact measures this year to secure our borders and modernize legal immigration system. The campaign believes several areas could form the basis of bipartisan compromise that would break the current gridlock, including:
- Increasing the human, physical, and technological resources along the southern border and at ports of entry.
- Sensibly reforming our nation’s asylum laws.
- Significantly increasing the annual quotas for employment-based immigrant and nonimmigrant visas.
- Instituting modern, effective, and efficient employment verification reforms.
- Expanding the scope of essential worker programs.
- Creating new visa options for international students, entrepreneurs, and high-demand workers to meet critical workforce needs.
Inaction is unacceptable
“Our elected officials keep talking about securing the border and fixing our broken legal immigration system, but nothing ever seems to get done. And the problems just get worse. This coalition of over 430 business organizations has a simple message: ‘Inaction on border security and legal immigration is unacceptable.’” – Neil Bradley, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Executive Vice President and Chief Policy Officer.
Tell Congress to fix our broken immigration system
Read the letter and tell Congress to secure our borders and fix our broken immigration system by using the button below.
About the authors
Jon currently serves as the Vice President of Immigration Policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He joined the Chamber in June 2014. He works with Chamber member companies to form Chamber policy positions on various issues and he advocates for sensible immigration policies before Congress and the executive branch agencies.