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Bob's post about the desire for 4 in 10 Mexicans to emigrate to the US reminds me of a conversation I had recently with a close friend.

While noting with joy how her cousin could pay $75 a day (wasn't it $50 not too long ago?) for semi-skilled Mexican day laborers to fix her home in Long Island, she insisted that the federal government "should do something to help the Mexican economy so people wouldn't want to come here".

Well, this was a new one, to me at least.

Poll

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I saw over on Kudlow's blog this story on a Pew poll which found that four out of every ten adults in Mexico would migrate to the U.S. This is unsurprising since 1 in 10 Mexicans already lives in this country. Recent reports from across the border makes it sound like drugs gangs have the run of the place.

The immigration issue has once again come front and center with Bush's plan for a guest worker plan. People such as Congressman Tom Tancredo and blogger/columnist Michelle Malkin have been talking about this issue for a while. While Bush denies it, his plan seems to offer a defacto amnesty. This has already lead to an increase in illegal immigration as this Washington Post article suggests.

So, it would appear that a guest worker program may cause a tidal wave of immigrants from Mexico if the poll is correct and anecdotal evidence is right. I say we take them. I am one of those on the right that supports easy immigration policies. Of course, there are potential economic consequences of allowing a large number of unskilled workers in the country. Namely, they won't have health insurance and will stretch an already overburdened public health care system and, also, they could drive down wages on the low end. However, as the article points out, even the educated want to move to here.

This leads to a larger question of whether we can absorb 30 million immigrants from another culture. Pat Buchanan would say we can't and that Latinos have already had negative consequences on our culture. I strongly disagree with him on this point and wonder why he thinks American culture is so weak. That is, why after absorbing many immigrants before that it will be Latinos which doom us? Victor Davis Hanson has made some interesting points in some of his columns and what he says is similar to my experiences(his comments on the guest worker program is here). There are negatives as he points out, but also a ton of positves. The proliferation of taquerias being just one. Also, the fact that many latinos grow up to be patriotic Americans who serve dispraportionally on the front lines in the armed services.

As Kudlow says "Looks like we're doing something right", but more importantly an easy immigration policy is consistent with freedom and free markets.

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