The Economics of Immigration Reform

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The push for immigration reform got a shot in the arm this week when a bipartisan group of eight U.S. senators released a comprehensive proposal that would provide a path to citizenship for the country's 11 million undocumented workers. 

The announcement Monday came a day before President Obama pitched his own plan

"We have an immigration system that is out of date and badly broken, a system that’s holding us back instead of helping us grow our economy and strengthen our middle class," Mr. Obama said in a speech at a Nevada high school Tuesday. 

In this episode of Money Talking, Joe Nocera of the New York Times and Rana Foroohar of Time magazine examine the economic case for immigration reform, which has been made by researchers, business leaders and elected officials of every political persuasion.

The most recent attempt at comprehensive immigration reform ended abruptly in June 2007 when President George W. Bush's proposals failed to pass the Senate

A few weeks earlier, the Congressional Budget Office found that legalizing undocumented immigrants would have a slight net benefit on the federal budget, increasing revenues by $48 billion while costing just $23 billion in increased public services.

Nocera and Foroohar explain what this year's proposed reforms would mean for wages and benefits, entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security, consumer prices and the economy as a whole.

Looking ahead, Nocera previews the future for aerospace giant Boeing Co. as it struggles to roll out its 787 Dreamliner, the high-tech jet that has been held up by supply chain issues and malfunctions of its lithium-ion batteries

Foroohar talks about how General Electric is forging new ground when it comes to wiring appliances and even jet engines with sensors so they can transmit information to people and other machines. It's known as the Industrial Internet