1. Rebalance labor-based immigration. The worst aspect of the Gang of Eight bill is its approach to the lower-skill end of America’s labor market; the best is its approach to the higher-skill end. The basic trouble is that the bill treats both segments the same way — as though there is a shortage of workers in both, and if only we addressed that shortage with immigrant workers, it would also help everyone involved and the country as a whole. This is true for high-skill workers, but it is decidedly untrue for low-skill workers.

The April unemployment report, for instance, showed that the unemployment rate among people with bachelor’s degrees or higher was 3.6 percent. Among those with less than a high-school diploma, it was 11.4 percent.

The first number indicates something of a labor shortage while the second indicates that supply far outstrips demand. This disparity is nothing new, of course, though it has actually gotten much worse since the last round of the immigration wars, in 2007. Here is what the unemployment rate has looked like for people with bachelor’s degrees or more (what high-skill immigrants tend to be) and for those with less than a high-school diploma (as low-skill immigrants tend to be) over the past ten years, using data for people 25 and older to be able to compare apples to apples…