Critics often say it would be far too expensive for the United States to deport all illegal immigrants.
But the cost of letting them stay in the country would be much, much higher, according to a new analysis by the Center for Immigration Studies.
In fact, it would cost roughly six times as much to allow all current illegal immigrants to live in the U.S. for life than it would to deport them all, the study found.
CIS used data from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which reported the average cost of a deportation was $10,854 in fiscal year 2016. This figure includes the cost of apprehension, detention and processing.
Meanwhile, the average lifetime net fiscal drain (taxes paid minus services used) for each illegal immigrant is $65,292. This figure was based on fiscal estimates of immigrants by education level from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
Wisconsin businessman Paul Nehlen, who is challenging House Speaker Paul Ryan in the 2018 GOP primary in Wisconsin’s first congressional district, said this report offers an important message for the D.C. establishment.
“If the federal government is serious about raising the wages of its citizens and reducing the tax burden on those same voters, they should immediately commence deportation procedures against all illegal aliens in this country,” Nehlen told WND.
Nehlen, author of “Wage The Battle,” does not think most D.C. politicians are truly in tune with American voters on illegal immigration.
“I think there’s a very small slice of both the Democrat and the Republican caucuses who are in touch with the real impact of illegal immigration, but at the same time, there’s a large subset of both groups that I refer to as the Uni-Party that are perfectly content to either garner votes if they’re Democrats in name only, or supply cheap labor if they’re Republicans in name only,” Nehlen said.
Assuming the U.S. government is correct that there are 11.43 million illegal immigrants in the country, the total cost of deportation would come to $124.1 billion. Meanwhile, applying the NAS fiscal drain estimates to the estimated education levels of illegals, CIS found the total lifetime fiscal drain for the current crop of illegals is $746.3 billion.
However, that number does not include the descendants of illegal immigrants currently here. Steven Camarota, CIS’s director of research and author of the report, wrote the following:
“Many of the descendants of less-educated immigrants struggle, often earning low wages themselves and making use of welfare programs and other public services. If we use the NAS study’s estimates that include the progeny of immigrants, it adds $16,998 (in 2016 dollars) to the net fiscal drain, raising the total for the average illegal immigrant to $82,290. If we assume 11.43 million illegal immigrants are in the country, then the total cost of illegal immigrants and their descendants would be $940.6 billion.”
Daniel Horowitz, senior editor at Conservative Review and author of “Stolen Sovereignty: How to Stop Unelected Judges From Transforming America,” believes birthright citizenship is how illegal immigration really hurts the U.S. fiscally. And he thinks it’s all a result of activist judges who have interpreted the Fourteenth Amendment as granting citizenship to the children of illegal aliens who are born on U.S. soil.
“A lot of people note that illegal immigrants aren’t entitled to welfare, and indeed legal immigrants are officially barred under current law from receiving any welfare payments for five years,” Horowitz told WND. “The problem with that is birthright citizenship, because the minute they come here and they have a baby, due to the erroneous interpretation of the Fourteenth Amendment, the family could immediately secure welfare benefits on behalf of that American-born child.”
There were several caveats in the CIS study. Camarota wrote that in FY 2012, ICE deported 71 percent more illegals, but with a similar size budget to FY 2016. Therefore, if FY 2012 is the norm, the average cost of deportation would be only $5,915. Also, ICE’s estimates for deportation costs do not include the cost of immigration courts run by the Department of Justice. Dividing the court’s 2016 budget by the number of deportations would add $1,749 to the average cost of a 2016 removal.
On the other side of the ledger, Camarota wrote that the NAS projects the future fiscal impacts of immigrants. However, many current illegals are not recent arrivals, so some of the net burden they create has already been passed onto taxpayers. CIS estimated one-fifth of the average fiscal deficit of the current illegal immigrant population has already been incurred.
Furthermore, Camarota pointed out the method the NAS uses to make its fiscal estimates is critically important.
“To create its long-term fiscal estimates, the NAS uses the concept of ‘net present value’ (NPV), which is commonly used by economists,” he wrote. “This approach has the effect of reducing the size of the net fiscal drain that unskilled immigrants create because costs or benefits years from now are valued less relative to more immediate costs. If the NPV concept is not used, the actual net lifetime fiscal cost of illegal immigrants is likely $120,000 to $130,000 per illegal alien, or between $1.4 and $1.5 trillion for the entire illegal alien population, excluding descendants.”
Camarota concluded his report thus:
“[B]ecause the overwhelming share of illegal immigrants residing in the country have not completed high school or have only a high school education, it would require highly implausible assumptions to avoid a substantial net fiscal drain from this population. In short, illegal immigrants are a large net fiscal drain because of their education levels and this fact drives the results.
“Deportation, on the other hand, is not that costly relative to the fiscal costs illegal immigrants create. Of course, there are many other factors to consider when deciding on the best course of action than just the fiscal balance between removal and allowing illegal immigrants to remain. That said, deporting a large share of illegal immigrants can be justified from a fiscal point of view.”
“Wage the Battle: Putting America First in the Fight to Stop Globalist Politicians and Secure the Borders” is a call to action. It is the amazing story of how self-described “manufacturing guy” Paul Nehlen took on Speaker of the House Paul Ryan in one of the most closely followed congressional races in the nation. Nehlen’s run presaged the international movement against globalism which reached its climax with the election of President Donald Trump. It’s a firsthand look at the development of one of the original “Trump Republicans” and the populist message which is sending shockwaves through the Beltway Right.