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The effect of illegal immigration on the U.S. economy - Term Paper Example

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Illegal Immigration is a social, economic and security problem for the U.S. numerous polls indicate that a majority of Americans, including Mexican-Americans, want the government to prevent the tidal wave of illegal aliens cascading over the border…
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The effect of illegal immigration on the U.S. economy
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Download file to see previous pages A nation without borders is not a nation and this country has been losing control of the borders for many decades, losing prosperity, security and autonomy along with them. One of the most important issues of the White House and Congress should be securing the borders, but homeland security is all but non-existent. This is a complex problem that is not being solved by the congressmen, who continuously fail to act in the country’s best interests. The massive numbers of illegal aliens pouring across mainly the southern border has and continues to cause substantial economic, social and physical harms to legal citizens. These harms occur predominantly to those who are among the most vulnerable segments of the population: minorities, children and the poor. The fundamental reason for the flood of immigration from Latin America, specifically Mexico, is the disintegration of the Mexican economy predominantly resulting from free-trade strategies employed by the North American Free Trade Agreement and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The rampant corruption within the Mexican government has also contributed significantly to the collapse of the Mexican economy. “Due to IMF policies regarding Mexico, its economic output dropped 33 percent in the past two decades” (Small, 2005). During this period, its foreign debt rose 359 percent because of widespread looting of the national coffers. These factors caused the “collapse of all areas of productive economic activity and employment, is the primary driver of the flood of emigrants desperate to leave Mexico, to find some livelihood for themselves and their families in the United States” (Small, 2005). It has been estimated that the added cost to the federal government will be more than $15 billion per year when the present illegal aliens become citizens and begin collecting welfare benefits. The proposed bill will add greatly to this number because it will encourage a new surge of low skilled workers through its guest worker program. Traditionally, immigrants to the U.S. were less likely than those born in America to collect welfare. This historic arrangement has radically changed over the past three decades. Today, immigrant families are at least 50 percent more likely to receive federal benefits than those born in this country. Additionally, immigrants are more likely to adapt their lives to rely on the welfare system and studies have shown the longer immi­grants stay in the U.S., the more likely they are to be on welfare. To further aggravate the situation, when an illegal immigrant becomes a citizen, he can legally bring his parents who also have the right to become citi­zens. The estimated long-term cost of overall federal benefits could exceed $50 billion per year for the parents of the 10 million beneficiaries of amnesty. Approximately half of current illegal immigrants do not possess a high-school level education. Welfare use among this group and for low-skill immigrants granted amnesty is three times the rate for the U.S. born citizens. Over the past two decades, about 10 million people who do not possess a high-school diploma have entered the country and predictably end up on welfare. (Rector, 2006). Illegal immigrants receive more from public monies than they contribute which lowers the standard of living for legal citizens. Illegal immigrants contribute greatly to the overall population growth and health care, education and employment are the most impacted. Salaries are driven down by illegal immigrants willing to work for much less while their children, illegal and legal, overcrowd the schools. It’s the U.S. taxpayer who is sent the bill for their health care services as well. In addition, the large influx of illegal aliens ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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