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Members of Congress are in their home districts until later this fall, but that doesn’t mean they’re able to escape the issues on Capitol Hill.
Immigration reform is one of those issues following them back home. Advocacy groups and their opponents around the country are staging protests and events to highlight the issue.
But one potential side effect of immigration reform is getting overlooked: private prisons stand to make a lot of money.
Patrick O Connor, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal, tells Here & Now that the companies that run private prisons started benefiting as early as 2005, when changes were made in the way people were prosecuted, under a program called Operation Streamline.
The program shifted people into the federal system instead of going through the civil system, or simply being deported.
“A lot more people are in prison than had been before on immigration charges, and the companies are the direct beneficiaries of those policies,” O’Connor said.
While immigration reform would decriminalize the population inside the United States, border control would be strengthened.
Any legislation coming out of the House would likely call for even stronger border control than the Senate version.