Texas Congressional Delegation
United States Capitol
Dear Senators and Congressmen:
As a coalition of Texas businesses and associations dedicated to promoting common-sense immigration reforms that strengthen our economy, we urge the Texas delegation of the U.S. Congress to support legislation giving permanent protections to Dreamers and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders. These bills are an economic imperative and would allow these immigrants, many of whom have lived in Texas for decades, to continue to contribute to our labor force and tax base, start new businesses that create jobs, and pursue their education.
Nationwide, there are 1.25 million Dreamers—immigrants brought to the United States as children—who are eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. According to New American Economy, in Texas there are over 216,000 DACA eligible residents, 93.2 percent of whom are employed and active in the labor force. At the same time, almost 15 percent of the 318,000 immigrants nationwide who hold TPS, a designation given to people fleeing violence or natural disaster in their home country, reside in Texas. Combined, Texas Dreamers and TPS holders pay $820.5 million in taxes and hold over $3 billion in total spending power, making them crucial contributors to our state’s economy.
This Administration has announced plans to terminate both programs, and while legal challenges have temporarily stopped that from happening, these immigrants could soon face deportation. That uncertainty hurts both Dreamers and TPS holders and the communities that they are a part of. Economically, with unemployment at near-record lows, this is a scenario we simply cannot afford.
As business leaders, we cannot allow politics to stand in the way of economic growth. That is why three months ago, more than 85 Texas business leaders signed the Texas Compact, a set of principles outlining our immigration priorities, to ensure that both Washington DC and Austin hear our perspective on this issue. Following that, we successfully advocated to protect tuition equity for immigrant students in Texas this session. That was an important step in recognizing the positive impact Dreamers and TPS holders have on our economy as business owners, taxpayers, and consumers. But only Congress has the power to enact a real and permanent solution. We call on you to protect DACA and TPS holders now.
To compete globally, Texas needs federal immigration policies that reaffirm our global reputation as a welcoming and business-friendly state. It’s time for the entire Texas delegation to put politics aside and stand up for our young people and for our economy.
Texans for Economic Growth