Aliens’ fiscal drain on America

Steven Camarota asserts ‘benefits’ of cheap labor outweighed by other costs.

Bob Quasius

Five issue areas require examination to understand how Bob Quasius misapprehends immigration in his reply to my first column. First, immigration policy should not only reflect what the business community wants, but should also take into account our ability to assimilate and integrate immigrants. Second, amnesty and increased immigration have been tried before, and it did not solve the problem. Third, there is no evidence of a labor shortage. Fourth, immigration scarcely impacts the aging of society. Lastly, immigration creates very minimal economic gains for natives, while generating significant fiscal costs.

Let’s start with the facts in regard to current immigration. In 2010 there were 40 million immigrants (about one-fourth illegal) in the country, accounting for one in eight U.S. residents compared to one in 20 residents in 1970. With the notable exception of the period 1860 to 1920, the immigrant portion of our population is higher now than at any time in our history. Each year 1 million immigrants receive “green cards” – permanent residence. In addition, about 700,000 long-term visitors enter annually, primarily guest workers, foreign students and their families.

Amazingly, Bob actually wants to substantially increase these numbers. The Senate Gang of Eight bill roughly doubles both legal permanent immigration and guest workers. Bob, like the authors of the Gang of Eight bill, gives no thought to the impact on schools, infrastructure, the health-care system or American workers. Furthermore, unlike the last great wave of immigration a century ago, multi-culturalism and grievous-based politics are unfortunately now permanent features of our political system. Given this reality, doubling legal immigration seems grossly irresponsible.


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