The New Immigration Math

|

From today's Wash Post:

Critics of the Senate immigration bill, which seeks to crack down on illegal immigration while giving many currently undocumented workers a chance to work legally in this country, tout a Congressional Budget Office study that they say shows the bill would cost a whopping $126 billion over 10 years….

So how did critics of the Senate bill arrive at the sensational $126 billion figure, which appears nowhere in the CBO report? First, they counted all of the bill's spending increases while ignoring all of its increases in revenue. For example, they counted the increased costs of Social Security and Medicare benefits for those additional immigrants who would qualify for them, while ignoring the increased Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes the immigrants would pay to qualify for those benefits.

Whole thing here.

Reason's August-September issue covered immigration from just about every angle possible. Check it out here.

NEXT: Hooray for DDT, Says WHO—Science Wins Over Superstition

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. I suppose you could say that a lot of those Social Security and Medicare receipts would have been coming in anyway; many illegal immigrants make up Social Security numbers and pay into the system without having the ability to withdraw anything.

  2. Led Zeppelin – “The Immigrant Song”:

    Ah, ah,
    We come from the land of the ice and snow,
    From the midnight sun where the hot springs blow.
    The hammer of the gods will drive our ships to new lands,
    To fight the horde, singing and crying: Valhalla, I am coming!

    On we sweep with threshing oar,
    Our only goal will be the western shore.

    Ah, ah,
    We come from the land of the ice and snow,
    From the midnight sun where the hot springs blow.
    How soft your fields so green, can whisper tales of gore,
    Of how we calmed the tides of war. We are your overlords.

    On we sweep with threshing oar,
    Our only goal will be the western shore.

    So now you’d better stop and rebuild all your ruins,
    For peace and trust can win the day despite of all your losing.

    “Ah, ah?” Somehow, that doesn’t sound like what Plant is singing in that song. And no, it’s not really relevant, but I always hear that song in my head when we talk about immigration. Must be my Viking blood running amok again. . . .

  3. Indeed. Much more ah-some.

  4. 60 million new LegalImmigrants over 20 years would pretty obviously have additional costs both financial and non-financial. You just need to think this one through in a bit more depth than Reason and the editorialists are capable of.

    And, of course, an amnestty would result in millions more IllegalAliens, and that would lead to additional financial and non-financial costs. (In addition to having to go through the “they’re here now, we have to declare an amnestty” dance again and again.)

    And, this would give the MexicanGovernment even more political power inside the U.S. That has a very heavy cost.

    It would also give even more political power to RacialDemagogues like AntonioVillaraigosa. That also has a very heavy cost.

    On the bright side, if amnestty passes, the millions of patriotic American citizens will become even madder about the issue than they are now. And, that might lead to change in addition to all of those who’ve promoted massive immigration suffering the same fate as, for instance, WalterDuranty. Pundits might want to ask themselves what line of work they’re going to be in after what they promote is shown to be a complete failure.

    On a side note, the S_P_P has added a MythsAndFacts page to their website: tinyurl.com/hq7h4. In addition to promoting open borders, perhaps Reason should consider spreading some propaganda for them as well.

  5. AndWhenYouSquishWordsTogetherTheySoundMoreEvil

  6. “60 million new LegalImmigrants over 20 years would pretty obviously have additional costs both financial and non-financial.” They would also pretty obviously have additional benefits both financial and non-financial.

    “You just need to think this one through in a bit more depth than Reason and the editorialists are capable of.” Actually, they’ve linked to a number of studies of the economic effects of immigration. You just don’t like the results of rigorous quantitative analysis of the question.

    “And, of course, an amnestty would result in millions more IllegalAliens…” That would depend on whether the amnesty is accopanied by a reform of the immigration laws that impose IllegalAlien status on the Paperwork-Deprived America-Joiners that are going to come into the country over the coming years.

    “It would also give even more political power to RacialDemagogues like AntonioVillaraigosa.” Ooh, no, not Antonio Villaraigosa! Could you have possibly picked a less itimidaging boogey man?

    “On the bright side, if amnestty passes, the millions of patriotic American citizens will become even madder about the issue than they are now.” Especially the farmers throughout the country who are plowing under their crops this year because of the labor shortage. I’m sure they’ll be furious at the prospect of being able to continue their livelihoods.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.