Immigration Myths vs Facts: New pamphlet published for 2016 election

The issue of immigration has become central to the 2016 presidential election. Republican candidate Donald Trump has chosen to focus on the supposed threat of immigrants to the American way of life as a major campaign theme. From his first campaign speech, he took aim at immigrants Mexico is supposedly “sending” to the United States, whom he characterized as killers, drug dealers, and rapists. He also has singled out Muslims as posing a terrorist threat. When called on these claims, Trump has not backed down, but has instead repeated them again and again.

Trump also proposes “solutions” to the supposed immigrant and Muslim threat to the United States. He has called for the mass deportation of the approximately 10 to 11 million undocumented immigrants now living in the United States. He proposes to build a wall along the 1,900 mile U.S.-Mexican border, and says he will “make Mexico pay for it.” How? He proposes to seize the money that undocumented immigrants earn working in the United States and send back to their impoverished families and communities in Mexico. He will also, so he says, end birthright citizenship, even though it is written into the 14th Amendment of the Constitution and thus cannot be changed by a presidential decree or even a vote in Congress.  He has said he would bar Muslims from visiting this country.

Various Republican politicians running for office down ticket also have adopted these bigoted and extremist positions, many of which have found their way into the Republican Party Platform for 2016.   Efforts to pass legislation in favor of a more rational and humane immigration policy have been blocked by Congress, mostly by Republican representatives and senators. With the help of Republican appointees to the Supreme Court, twenty-six GOP attorneys-general have blocked President Obama’s efforts to provide relief for undocumented immigrants via executive orders.

These political misleaders legitimize bigoted speech and actions among the public, with the danger that this will lead to a rise in hate crimes against immigrants, Latinos, and Muslims. This has happened many times before in the history of this country.

Trump has flooded the country with a veritable tsunami of misinformation about the relationship of immigration to crime, terrorism, poverty, and unemployment. Most of his false information seems to come from a network of far-right nativist organizationsfounded by John Tanton and funded by right-wing businesses and foundations.

These include: Numbers USA, which likes to claim that the environment is threatened by immigration; the Center for Immigration Studies, which puts out massive amounts of dubious “research,” all with an anti-immigrant slant; and the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), which calls for a reduction of both undocumented and documented immigration. Credence is lent to these dubious organizations by the corporate-controlled press, which often quotes them uncritically without mentioning that many people knowledgeable about the immigration situation regard some of them as hate groups.   This misinformation in the media programs voters to be receptive to Trump’s anti-immigrant message.

In 2008, the pamphlet “Immigration: Myths and Facts” was issued to counter these lies. A second edition was published in 2013. Given the level of anti-immigrant propaganda that is coming out of the Trump campaign, we have updated this important information source.

You can download it here and distribute it to all your workmates, friends, relatives, and neighbors.  You can also contact us if you are interested in obtaining printed copies to distribute.

Download in English: “Immigration Myth vs. Fact”

Download in Spanish: “La Inmigración Mitos y Realidades


Special to People’s World
Special to People’s World

People’s World is a voice for progressive change and socialism in the United States. It provides news and analysis of, by, and for the labor and democratic movements to our readers across the country and around the world. People’s World traces its lineage to the Daily Worker newspaper, founded by communists, socialists, union members, and other activists in Chicago in 1924.