by Kung Fu Zu
In my previous posts, I have gone over the risks amnesty presents to the Republican Party as well as Americans’ beliefs on amnesty in general. In this piece, I would like to look briefly into what the economic costs/benefits would be for the country as a whole.
Proponents of amnesty say granting amnesty to illegal immigrants will be a boon for the economy and they will make great economic contributions to the country. Can this claim be substantiated? One of the most commonly used ways to measure the potential earning power of people is their education level. Therefore, it would seem reasonable to determine the education profile of illegal immigrants.
On basis of the 2010 Census, the Heritage Foundation estimates that “50.7% of illegal immigrant households are headed by people without a high school education. That compares to 9.6% for households of native citizens.”
The same study estimated that “a typical illegal immigrant has only a 10th grade education, half of such households were headed by someone with no high school degree and only 25% have a high school degree.”
“In 2010, an average unlawful immigrant household received about US$14,387 more in benefits than it paid in taxes” according to the Heritage Foundation study. And this is without having access to the over 80 means-tested welfare programs that would be available to them once they were given amnesty.
If Senate bill S. 744 were passed as written, the Heritage Foundation calculates that “benefits received by the newly amnestied immigrants would exceed taxes paid by the same immigrants by US$6.3 trillion dollars over the lifetime of those immigrants.” Let me repeat, US$6.3 trillion.
It is well known that long-term estimates can be far off the mark. But even if one cuts the Heritage Foundation estimate in half, the numbers are frightening. Fortunately, we don’t have to rely on theoretical future numbers to understand how much amnesty could cost us. We have concrete information already.
According to the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors, “illegals received 23.6% of welfare spending in Los Angeles, in 2009.” This is the type of contribution I fear illegal aliens will make once given amnesty. Does that sound like they are contributing a lot to the country? Would that be our future with amnesty?
This brings up a point which needs to be stressed. We know why the Democrat Party is pushing for amnesty. They want a permanent underclass which will give the Democrats a lock on political power. Why, though, are powerful business interests pushing so hard for amnesty and open borders?
The answer is in the above numbers. They want the rest of society, i.e. the middle class, to pay for the social costs of those millions of poorly-educated, low-skilled laborers who will be toiling for wages other Americans will not accept. This is simply another case of transferring the wealth of one group to another, except in this case it will be from the middle class to the rich.
Can America afford this? • (1187 views)