1 big thing: Immigration policy for America's heartland
The U.S. already has a special visa to attract foreign doctors to treat rural Americans — now a new report suggests expanding that to all skilled immigrants who'd be willing to settle in areas facing long-term demographic problems.
Why it matters: "Migration out of struggling areas has become skill-biased," according to a new report released by the Economic Innovation Group.
- "Someone with a professional or graduate degree is twice as likely to move states as a high school graduate."
- "For every one college graduate that the fastest shrinking counties add, the fastest growing add two."
- "By 2037, 67% of U.S. counties will contain fewer prime working age adults than they did in 1997."
The big picture: "At the national level, slower growth in America’s working-age population is a major reason that mainstream forecasters now expect the economy to expand around 2 percent each year rather than the 3 percent common in the second half of the 20th century," the N.Y. Times' Neil Irwin notes.
The EIG's set of principles for a heartland visa:
- Communities must "opt in": Towns or counties that don't want to participate shouldn't be forced to join.
- Distressed areas first: The program "should be targeted to places confronting chronic population stagnation or loss."
- No work restrictions: Visa holders should be allowed to compete in the labor market, as long as they stay in a specific geographic area.
- This should be a path to a green card: "The prospect of permanent residency ... should provide an extremely strong incentive for compliance."
- Adding to, not replacing, existing skilled visas: "The scheme would therefore need to be accompanied by a commensurate increase to the green card cap."
The bottom line: This is somewhat of a moot point during the Trump presidency, which has sought to curb immigration levels. But as the U.S. faces further demographic decline, this is one option for lawmakers trying to help the areas hurting the most.
1 person to know: Nipsey Hussle
Readers pointed out that our mention of the death of Nipsey Hussle in PM yesterday focused on a disturbance at one of his memorials, when there’s so much more to his life:
- Hussle was an entrepreneur, a father, a philanthropist, a community leader.
As Axios' Dion Rabouin wrote in his Markets newsletter: "He was an independent artist who pioneered and perfected a new music industry business model for the 21st century."
- "He invested his music earnings in brick-and-mortar stores and direct-to-consumer apparel and clothing lines based in South Central Los Angeles that employed and offered opportunity to many who otherwise had none."
- "His greatest legacy will be the knowledge and wisdom in his words and what he passed on to those who were willing to listen."
- Dion e-mails: "To people like me and the community I come from — not just black but from the West — this guy is a legend, a once-in-a-generation figure who is a major part of our story."
Why it matters, from Axios' Abby Clawson: "Public perceptions and attitudes toward black males not only help to create barriers to advancement within this society, but also make that position seem natural or inevitable."
- "Among the most important mechanisms for maintaining (or changing) these perceptions are the mass media with their significant power to shape popular ideas and attitudes."
3. 1 fun thing
"Disney’s 'Captain Marvel' is the newest member of the billion-dollar club," Variety reports.
- "The superhero tentpole starring Brie Larson officially surpassed $1 billion in ticket sales worldwide, reaffirming the long-known notion that female superheroes can hold their own at the box office. The blockbuster has generated $358 million in North America, along with $645 million overseas."