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Congress: Ryan's economic argument for immigration reform

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) sits down for a Q&A with National Journal on immigration. He makes an economic argument for bringing in the approximately 11 million undocumented immigrants out of the shadows. Said Ryan: Immigrants “bring labor to our economy so jobs can get done. The dairy farmers in western Wisconsin are having a hard time finding anyone to help them produce their products, which are mostly cheese. If they can’t find workers, then they can’t produce, and we’ll end up importing. The flip side of the argument is: Just raise wages enough to attract people. But you raise wages too much in certain industries, then you’ll get rid of those industries, and we’ll just have to import.”

But he didn’t talk specifically about citizenship. Instead, he said this: “You need to be fair to the legal immigrants who did everything right, and honor them by making sure they are in the front of the line and that [undocumented] people are not given any special pathway ahead of them. That’s just fairness. You want to make sure that, for those who did not follow the rules, there are consequences to be paid. Those are guiding principles. The way we’re looking at it is, probationary visas will go to undocumented immigrants, who will be able to stay and work so long as they honor the terms of their probation, so long as the border and the interior enforcement is actually implemented.”

“Senator Elizabeth Warren on Friday urged President Obama to appoint Janet Yellen to head the Federal Reserve, choosing to back Yellen instead of her former Harvard colleague, Larry Summers,” the Boston Globe writes. “The influential Massachusetts Democrat signed onto a one-page letter circulating among Senate Democrats that calls on Obama to appoint Yellen, who would become the first woman to hold the position. Yellen is currently the Fed’s vice chair, and has worked closely with Chairman Ben Bernanke, who is expected to retire when his term ends in January.”

More: “Senate Democrats have been circulating a letter that doesn’t mention Summers, but makes a point of praising Yellen -- and urging the president to appoint her. The letter has not been made public, and a copy obtained by the Globe did not list signatures. One source estimated that nearly half of the Senate Democrats had signed on.”

National Journal: “Lawmakers and lobbyists are using their confidential and off-the-record testimony and letters of support to ask for brand new or expanded tax breaks in addition to the old. It's a boondoggle that illustrates the difficulty of sorting through hundreds of breaks, which now cost the federal government more than $1 trillion a year and complicate a tax code that's already four million words long.”

Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) said the GOP won’t shut down the government in an attempt to de-fund Obamacare.