An immigration policy consistent with America's heritage and highest ideals could dramatically spur economic growth and solve many of our problems, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush told attendees on March 28 at the first Annual Innovative Real Estate Strategies conference in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
"A robust immigration policy" would also solve the nation's problems arising from an excess supply of real estate, Bush remarked. "We need hard-working people with aspirations" to participate in the American dream.
"This proves I am not running for anything," Bush quipped, acknowledging that his views on immigration were out of step with current mainstream thinking in the Republican Party. "I get to say what I think since I'm not running."
Despite the fact that his older brother, George W. Bush, left office in 2009 with near-record low approval rating, many Republicans have mentioned Jeb Bush as a possible presidential candidate in 2012 since they view the current field as sub-optimal. But the younger Bush clearly seems to be enjoying life in the private sector, where he gets to choose those public issues he wants to weigh in on. Constantly peppered with questions about a possible candidacy, he remarked at one point that it simply wasn't "his time."
"If we can secure the borders," most Americans would support a more enlightened immigration policy, he contended. "A great nation should be able to secure its borders" and have an e-verify system.
Increasing the number of high-achieving immigrants could create a burst of economic activity that would spur growth and would "benefit all of us."
Bush told attendees that economic growth was the best solution to the surfeit of problems afflicting the nation. He cited the power of compounding to prove his point. If the U.S. can lift its growth rate over the next decade from 2% to 4%, "the difference is the size of Germany."