Monday Buzz: Census Politics, Civic Values, Congressional Irresponsibility, More

Simon had a great closing quote this week in big Politico article about H1-Bs and immigration reform:

The small visa programs have little to do with the central issues of the broader immigration debate, such as how to handle the 11 million illegal immigrants now in the U.S., said Simon Rosenberg, president of NDN, a progressive group seeking a broad immigration package.

But they have become the stray dogs in this political fight. “It’s irresponsible the way some members of Congress are going after this,” Rosenberg said.

Simon was also the lead quote in an NPR story about immigration reform:

Now, immigrant advocates are rolling out a new argument: They argue an immigration overhaul is, in fact, vital to economic recovery. Simon Rosenberg of the Democratic think-tank NDN says legalizing immigrants would go a long way toward ending unfair competition for low-wage American workers.

"The people who are not playing on an even playing field are the undocumented, because they can be paid less than you. They can be given less benefits. They can be forced to work 60, 70 hours by unscrupulous employers," he says.

Rosenberg and others also point to a Congressional Budget Office study that found legalizing the estimated 6 or 7 million unauthorized workers and their families would add tens of billions to the U.S. Treasury. It would come through more taxes paid, plus the fees and fines likely in any legalization package.

Finally, Simon laid out the case for passing immigration reform this year in The Hill.

It was a big week for NDN fellows Morley Winograd and Mike Hais, who appeared in the USA Today, the Washington Post (twice, here and here), the Harvard Crimson, and the Argus Reader. Here are the highlights from the USA Today article:

Surveys show people born between 1982 and 2000 are the most civic-minded since the generation of the 1930s and 1940s, say Morley Winograd and Michael Hais, co-authors of Millennial Makeover: MySpace, YouTube, and the Future of American Politics.

Unlike culturally polarized Baby Boomers or cynical Gen-Xers, this is "a generation of activist doers," they write.

"Other generations were reared to be more individualistic," Hais says. "This civic generation has a willingness to put aside some of their own personal advancement to improve society."

Here's an excerpt from Jose Antonio Vargas's piece in the Washington Post about the new Pew report on the internet and the 2008 campaign (which I wrote about here last week):

"Reading the report, what struck me is the movement of reading news online and watching news on TV and online that agree with you, this increase partisanship that we're seeing," said Morley Winograd, co-author of "Millennial Makeover: MySpace, YouTube, and the Future of American Politics" and a fellow at NDN, a liberal think tank that has focused on the impact of new media in politics. "This is just the nature of the political era we're living in."

Finally, Rob was featured in an interesting NPR piece about the 2010 census -- you can listen to it here (Rob comes in around 7:35 if you want to skip Newt Gingrich).