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The Contender
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Immigration reform should include a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants in the US

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/22/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,439 times Debate No: 42784
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (8)
Votes (0)




Undocumented immigrants granted citizenship would contribute immensely to both our economy and culture. According to the Center for American Progress in a report published in May of 2013, the acquisition of citizenship would allow undocumented immigrants to produce and earn significantly more, creating 121,000 new jobs each year and paying an additional $109 billion in taxes. Not only that, according to a report titled "Immigration and the Economy," immigration reform would create a 3.3 percent increase in the Gross Domestic Product in 2023, and a 5.4 percent increase in 2033.


I will attack my opponets case then provide my own, one of his main arguments is economics. You must see the negation to be the most beneficial economical option for these reasons.

First when immigrants become documented citizens this qualifies them for welfare programs such as obama care and unemployment benefits. According to cis 57 percent of immigrants documented and undocumented use at least 1 welfare program costing an estimated 517 billion dollars. So you must see that immigrants cost more then what they provide and making them documented sends a message that it is okay to not seek employment but to just live off welfare programs.

Second his stats saying that immigrants boost gdp do not stand any ground because we cannot directly correlate gdp with immigration. Then he goes on to argue cultural diversity, there will be no enhancement in cultural diversity because
A) He has no stats to further this claim and

B) There is a 20 year waiting list for immigrants to seek citizenship so therefore prioritizing the undocumented citizens will not further cultural diversity

Now you must see the negation for these reasons

A) It is unfair to not let the people who are in the twenty year waiting list and who are going through the fair legal process not proiritize people who came into the country illegally

B) It furthers that it is permissable to break legislation and come here illegally.

For these reasons i urge an negative ballot
Debate Round No. 1


1) My opponent has stated that undocumented immigrants create a burden on welfare programs. However, as a report titled "Partnership for a New American Economy" has pointed out, immigrants started 28 percent of all new businesses in 2011. Additionally, the Fiscal Policy Institute finds that small businesses owned by immigrants employed an estimated 4.7 million people in 2007 and generated more than $776 billion in revenue annually. As we can see, if we were to grant these undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship, we would be greatly benefiting our economy as there is a high chance these immigrants will aspire to create better jobs than their average minimum-wage ones. (Just a side note: my opponent's source for the welfare argument is, as he/she stated, CIS, or the Center for Immigration Studies. However, I am curious as to whether or not he/she is aware that CIS is a known hate group which targets undocumented immigrants.)

2) When my opponent attacked my point about immigrants bolstering America's GDP, he/she claimed my argument was invalid. However, he/she has given no evidence whatsoever that supports his/her claim whereas I, in fact, have. Therefore, my argument does still stand true.

3) My opponent also refuted my cultural diversity argument by claiming it to be false since I do not have "stats." However, it is common sense that when people from foreign countries come to our nation, they bring with them the traditions of their culture. That is why when people go out to shop, eat, etc., there is a wide variety of choices for them to choose from. We eat pizza inspired from Italy, rice inspired from Asia, the list goes on. Therefore, my opponent cannot correctly claim that immigrants do not enhance our cultural diversity.

4) In my opponent's first point, he/she stated that a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants would be unfair to the immigrants currently waiting in line. However, I am curious as to what other plan he/she would propose to solve the issue of 11 MILLION undocumented immigrants currently residing in the United States. There is no other practical way to combat this issue other than granting citizenship.

5) In my opponent's second point, he/she claimed this path would promote illegal immigration. However, as reported by the Christian Science Monitor in January of 2013, Mexico, the main source of immigrants who enter the U.S. illegally, is experiencing a rapid birth rate decline and rising domestic industry wages, "making the U.S. less attractive." Additionally, the Center for Comparative Immigration Studies found, through thousands of interviews with prospective migrants in foreign countries, that none of the respondents who expressed an intent to immigrate stated amnesty as one of their primary reasons for coming to the U.S. Therefore, if we grant a pathway to citizenship for the millions of undocumented immigrants currently living in the U.S., it will NOT promote illegal immigration.

6) Additionally, there are countless reports of undocumented immigrants who are harassed due to their illegal status, which is also what causes them to stay silent and not speak out. A California State University survey found that 90 percent of migrant workers, for example, cite sexual harassment as a problem--local experts say violent sexual harassment among undocumented immigrants is a growing concern. "It's all too common," says attorney Stephen Born of the law firm Mills & Born, "It's hard to know what's unreported. Immigrants who are illegal avoid any contact with the authorities. It's one of those very-difficult-to-quantify issues." Due to the looming fear of deportation, many undocumented immigrants refuse to speak out, even when they are confronted with dangerous situations concerning assault. By granting these immigrants citizenship, we, as a nation, would be giving them a chance to speak out against the iniquities without having to worry about deportation.


I will attack for opponets attacks and provide my own

He counteracts my statistic and says that altough there is aburden it cant outweigh that they are provideing jobs in that survey it didnt provide a job success rate meaning we cant weigh those statistic but he counters by saying they bring 776 billion revenue but most of this revenue goes to the buissnessman and about 11 percent goes to the country so therefore his statistics cant counteract mine. And he attacks my source but his attacks are conspirical and this is a fact based debate. Secondly the lack of warrant to causation in the gdp statistic non weighable.
Thirdly his cultural diversisty has no impact That is substancial. Forth my counterplan os that in order to join thus country you have to adhere to the legal process and in order to prevent this deportation and enhhancement inn security wil prevent this.
Also his christan science moniter statistic is not substancial and there will always be millions of people coming into the country. And saying that through illegal immigration can we prevent illegal information makes no sense. Finally his attacks on quality of life is subjective and most people would rather adhere to fairness than non legislation
Vote neg
Debate Round No. 2


In my opponent's arguments, he fails to provide evidence to support his claims. Also, the structure of his arguments are quite confusing to follow. He only says my arguments are unreliable but does not go on to explain how or why, giving no legitimate refutations. My opponent claims my cultural diversity argument is "substancial"; in other words he is saying that it is in fact of considerable importance. Yet even if he meant that cultural diversity is not substantial, how can this be true when America was a nation founded upon immigrants? Some of you may have heard of the American Dream; James Truslow Adams, in his book The Epic of America, stated that the American dream is "that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement . . . a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position." What right do we have to kick out these immigrants who seek the same freedoms and opportunities that our founding fathers had sought? Now to address my opponent's "counterplan," he states that for these undocumented immigrants to join this country, they must "adhere to the legal process." However, this is not possible for the 11 million undocumented immigrants currently residing in the U.S. because THERE IS NO PATH. The only way for them to go through the legal process is if we deport all 11 million of them--an impractical feat that would only further complicate the situation. Therefore, a path to citizenship is the ideal solution. As for my Christian Science Monitor statistic, my opponent claims that it is also not "substancial." However, he does not refute my argument on any ground; my opponent has only been claiming my arguments to be unsubstantial without providing any evidence as to why. Therefore, all of my arguments still stand true. Additionally, my opponent claims that I have stated "through illegal immigration can we prevent illegal information" when I have done nothing of the sort. Finally, my opponent calls my argument about the quality of life for undocumented immigrants "subjective." Yet how can it be subjective when it is the truth? There are millions of undocumented immigrants who are being abused and harassed in our very own nation--their HUMAN RIGHTS are being violated. How can you turn a cold shoulder on all these people who have come to our nation seeking freedom and opportunity and are constantly harassed due to their illegal status? Human rights are entitled to any and every person, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, origin, etc. It is immoral and unjust to deprive these people of their basic rights. For all these reasons, I strongly urge a PRO ballot in this debate. Thank you.


utilitarynietzche forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by DB8ISSUES17 5 years ago
@johnwd I already participate in debate tournaments. However, seeing as our winter tournament had been canceled due to the weather, my partner and I did not get to argue this topic with any teams from other schools.
Posted by johnwd 5 years ago
Lol if you want to argue a PF topic go to an NFL tournament.
Posted by DB8ISSUES17 5 years ago
@TN05 This path would apply to all undocumented immigrants regardless of their past; this path does not include restrictions based upon criminal record and/or tax debt (that is for other parts of the immigration reform plan to cover). As the topic implies, this debate is only about a PATH to citizenship.
Posted by DB8ISSUES17 5 years ago
@chengste When I say 'path,' I mean that current plans regarding immigration reform should include a way for undocumented immigrants, who are already in the United States, to be able to earn citizenship without having to be deported back to their home country.
Posted by TN05 5 years ago
Does this apply to all illegal immigrants, including those convicted of crimes? Does it require them to pay back taxes they haven't payed?
Posted by chengste 5 years ago
as long as part of the path is to return to their home country and follow the law I would agree with you
Posted by DB8ISSUES17 5 years ago
@Ragnar No I am not proposing a new path; I am merely trying to debate the issue of whether or not immigration reform should include a way for undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States to earn citizenship and live without the fear of deportation in the United States.
Posted by Ragnar 5 years ago
Are you proposing a new path? Because there are plenty already.
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