Big names in big businesses are lobbying for immigration reform in Washington, D.C., including Mark Zuckerberg, George Soros, and Rupert Murdoch. But political strategists disagree about the motivation behind the money.
"Backing the push for comprehensive reform is an array of deep-pocketed special interests from an ostensibly diverse range of ideological perspectives, including the Chamber of Commerce, Rupert Murdoch, the Koch brothers, Mark Zuckerberg, Michael Bloomberg, George Soros, the AFL-CIO, the National Council of La Raza, and others," writes National Review's Andrew Stiles. Stiles added that Facebook Founder Zuckerberg announced plans to spend $50 million.
Dan Holler, communications director for Heritage Action for America, told The Christian Post in an interview on Friday that, "All the money is on the pro-amnesty side and certainly big business is behind bankrolling that." Holler did not speculate as to why these interests are supporting what he deems "amnesty," but at a Heritage Foundation briefing on Wednesday, a conservative pundit said big businesses want "amnesty" in order to get Democrats – the party of big business and big government – elected.
"If you take amnesty off the table, real immigration reform is something that could make its way through the process," Holler argued. "Christians should support reforms to the legal immigration system, but not amnesty," because it is allegedly unfair to the Americans already here since jobs are already scarce and introducing new people into the labor market will make it harder still.
A libertarian strategist, who asked not to be identified, described a meeting of a coalition focused on promoting economic growth through immigration reform. The coalition is "not on the Heritage Action side, which is trying to kill immigration reform," he alleged, and it isn't "on the big business, big labor side," including figures like Zuckerberg, lobbying for immigration reform.
"We're interested in genuine policy – what are the best ways to solve problems," the strategist explained. He argued that the lobbyists are focused on the small, specific provisions of an immigration reform bill, while his coalition aims to pass reform and solve major problems. "I think it's a matter of big picture verses specifics," he said.
"Cutting the deals kind of side, negotiating, is important, but that's not what our side is focused on," the libertarian strategist explained. His coalition aims to do whatever is necessary to strengthen the economy – decrease the unemployment rate and ensure creation of new businesses. The immigration system is broken, and if it is fixed, it can help businesses hire new skilled workers and achieve growth that helps everyone, he said.
"Having more people coming to this county will help native-born Americans economically," he believes. He said using arguments like that will help pass immigration reform.