In general I think immigration has been a huge positive in this country, especially 2nd generation which has a remarkable success rate in entrepreneurship, science, medicine, business, etc. We do have to ask the question: "how much legal immigration do we want and under what criteria.
Conservatives will say that without control of the borders that you can't do this. And to a point that's right.
No, not "to a point." It is absolutely correct. No control of the borders means no control of illegal immigration.
Except that Republicans and some Democrats have for years fought tough regulation on employment law that would have enforced immigration law at the employer level .
Why would that be? For Republicans, it's clear: businesses want cheap labor and the Republican party is the party of business. But, why would Democrats fight laws designed to "(enforce) immigration law at the employer level?"
Illegal immigrants do not take jobs, They are given jobs. You may have signs at the border saying keep out, but 10 metres in the signs say "help wanted".
What in the world is this supposed to mean?
"Help wanted" is the same as "Job available." When an illegal immigrant answers a "help wanted" sign he/she is "(taking) a job."
Now, if you mean to say, "They take jobs Americans won't" that is another argument than you are making.
However, working illegal aliens are "taking jobs." Otherwise, they are non-working illegal aliens.
So the question is not the ideal, as Rayjay expresses, and which I think most will agree is the goal.
The question is how does the nation resolve the current situation? Some 11 million illegal immigrants are currently in the US, MOST working gainfully and living lives as model citizens.
1. We don't know exactly how many illegal immigrants there are. We only have estimates. They may be 2x what you guess.
2. If legalized, they will be able to bring in millions more (relatives).
3. "Most" would be a number between 5.5 million and 11 million (your estimate). That leaves a lot who may not be "working gainfully" nor "model citizens."
AND much of the US economy depends on the labor of these 11 million.
That doesn't mean we have to legalize them nor grant them citizenship. It does mean we should have a sane solution for the problem.
However, a "comprehensive solution" (as liberals clamor for) is crap. It won't happen. It hasn't happened for the past 20 years and it won't happen because liberals always want legalization first and a real solution down the road. In other words, they want legalization without any kind of law enforcement solution no matter what they say (hint: that's pretty obvious as we look at the lawlessness they embrace and call "sanctuary" cities, counties and states.)
A just solution will provide a way for illegals with record of employment and roots in the community with a way to legalize their position. A just solution will ensure that employers that rely on many illegals will not find themselves wanting for labor.
A just solution will not spend inordinate amounts of tax money enforcing laws in a draconian fashion that ends up harming good people living good lives, or companies providing goods and services and employment.
It has to be done in an orderly fashion.
Honestly, if Democrats weren't being such morons, they'd get what they want from Trump. In spite of his "rapist" rhetoric, he's a businessman. He'd do exactly what Democrats want as soon as a system was in place to control immigration.
It's not hard. Go after employers AND require tamper-proof ID to work.
Problem solved. You're welcome.
If you could magically enforce the law so that every illegal of the 11 millions was evicted, what kind of damage do you think would occur?
With families ?
With the community?
Have you considered all these costs? For what benefit?
I don't know of anyone who actually believes this could happen--deporting them all. However, the "consequences" argument is often trotted out and it is complete nonsense. There are consequences for the decisions we make in life. You run a red light and you might get a ticket. You commit a burglary and you might get caught. You invest in a company and you might lose money. That's life. When you decide to break the law and enter another country, there might be consequences too. I find it funny that liberals won't look at Mexico's treatment of illegals in their country. There laws are far more draconian than ours.
And, as I said, I think if we establish control of the border and put labor controls in place, we will then see a "guest worker" program (for seasonal agriculture) and other increases in legal immigration, plus the legalization of many current illegals. But, it's going to have to be accomplished in an ORDERLY fashion, not a COMPREHENSIVE fashion.
Here's why: we don't trust government to solve the border problem because, as you said, R's and D's have not done it. They've never really come close. When they did, it was a Democratic plan that would have required people to trust the Feds to enforce the law, which we do not--and for good reason.