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Zocalo Public Square columnist Joe Mathews is hoping that Santa has room in that sack for what California really needs, about one million new immigrants. That might sound strange for a state that is already the most populous in the country, with nearly 40 million residents, but Mathews says California is facing critical shortages of all kinds of workers: from doctors and nurses to teachers and farmworkers. California has historically made up its workforce gap by welcoming new arrivals, but immigration is down, and it could go down further if the federal government gets its way.

Photo credit: Holger Hubbs

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Joe Mathews

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