News Corp's Rupert Murdoch urges U.S. immigration reform

Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:49am EDT

Rupert Murdoch arrives at the Time 100 gala celebrating the magazine's naming of the 100 most influential people in the world for the past year, in New York April 29, 2014. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Rupert Murdoch arrives at the Time 100 gala celebrating the magazine's naming of the 100 most influential people in the world for the past year, in New York April 29, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Lucas Jackson

(Reuters) - Media mogul Rupert Murdoch urged U.S. lawmakers to tackle far-reaching immigration reform, saying that scrapping quotas on special visas and promoting paths to citizenship would boost U.S. growth and innovation.

The chairman of 21st Century Fox (FOXA.O) and News Corp (NWSA.O) has also pressed for immigration reform in his native Australia in the belief that freer borders there and in America would boost trade relationships.

In an opinion piece published on Wednesday on the website of the Wall Street Journal, which he owns, Murdoch admonished opponents of such change in the United States "as being dead wrong about the long-term interests of our country".

"One of the most immediate ways to revitalize our economy is by passing immigration reform," said Murdoch, himself a former immigrant who became a naturalized American citizen in 1985.

He joined reform advocates who worry lawmakers might avoid taking up the thorny issue before November's congressional election, especially after House Republican Eric Cantor's shock defeat to a college economics professor who denounced him for being too eager to compromise with Democrats. U.S. President Barack Obama, a Democrat, has been pushing new immigration laws to create a pathway to citizenship for some 11 million undocumented residents. But a bill that passed the Democrat-controlled Senate has been stalled in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.

Murdoch argued for giving non-criminals already living in the United States a path to citizenship, removing the quota for "H1-B" visas for highly-skilled foreign workers, and strengthening border security.

He pointed to a study by the Partnership for a New American Economy, a bipartisan group of mayors and business executives where he is a member, that says over 40 percent of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or a child of immigrants.

He said Obama was exercising "wise restraint" in holding back on taking executive action over provisions of immigration policy in the hopes of a more bipartisan approach.

"However, if Congress fails to even try to have this important debate, the president might feel tempted to act via executive order," Murdoch wrote. "I hope it doesn't get to that point, given the furious political firestorm that would result."

(Editing by Mark Heinrich)

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Comments (16)
Dehumanist wrote:
Well if Murdoch is convinced the rest of the lemmings should soon follow

Jun 19, 2014 7:52am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Tiu wrote:
It was a mistake to allow Murdoch to gain the level of power he has over politicians not just in the US, but most other English speaking countries as well. All mega-corporations, and banks such as Murdochs need to be broken up. If their too big to fail, or too big to jail they are a threat to their host nation(s). Monopoly capitalism is bad for business as there is no way new competition can break through to refresh the business cycles.

Jun 19, 2014 8:17am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Ralphooo wrote:
All this gabble goes on while Murdoch’s deeply unnatural creation, Fox News, built from ignorance, spite and Murdoch’s money, combined together in a pit of ignorance and hatred, makes the job impossible.

That makes no sense, Mr. Murdoch. If you really want to help the US (ha!) you can start today, immediately, by firing Roger Ailes — who appears to be an immigrant from Lower Hell.

Jun 19, 2014 8:20am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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