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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

IS ILLEGALLY PRESENT IMMIGRATION POPULATION DECLINING?

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And if so, why?



The Center for Immigration Studies, the anti-immigrant center that generates studies for FAIR and other anti-immigrant groups, has released a report claiming that the number of people illegally present in the US has declined by nearly 1,300,000 over the last year, a decline the group believes is about 11%. The report credits tougher enforcement measures for the decrease.



In the mean time, pro-immigrant groups are firing back disputing the reports findings and arguing that even if they are true, the declines would be related to the downturn in the US economy. As the economy contracts, the demand for foreign workers should decline as well.



The American Immigration Law Foundation issued a statement criticizing the CIS report:

"CIS implies that the illegal immigrant
population could drop to half of what it is now within the next five
years if only presidential candidates keep silent about the details of
comprehensive immigration reform, taxpayers continue to pour billions
of dollars into enforcement, and the U.S. economic recession
persists--according to CIS, reducing illegal immigration apparently
comes with a cruel price tag.

 

Most researchers agree
that undocumented immigration to the United States is driven largely by
economics.  Yet, in a new report entitled Homeward Bound: Recent
Immigration Enforcement and the Decline in the Illegal Alien
Population, CIS dubiously claims that undocumented immigrants decide
where to live and work based more on the politics of immigration
enforcement than the economics of their own survival.  CIS concludes
that the recent decline in the "likely illegal population" (which it
defines as less-educated, foreign-born Hispanics age 18 to 40) is
largely the result of new immigration-enforcement efforts rather than
the downturn of the U.S. economy, including job losses in the construction sector that had been absorbing many less-skilled Hispanic immigrants. 

 

The persuasiveness of CIS' argument is undermined not only by an
absence of hard data, but by the faulty logic and contradictory
statements of the report itself.  The authors report confidently about
a population that is nearly impossible to accurately measure.  They
admit they did not include data about any population other than
Hispanics.  They provide no evidence for their assertion that the
immigration debate in Congress last summer spurred an increase in
undocumented immigration. 

 

CIS provides no real solutions to the nation's immigration problems.
They insult thoughtful Americans when they seemingly hope for continued
unemployment and recession, promote harsh enforcement measures that
separate families and destroy communities, and suggest that politicians
should not even talk about real solutions.  By requiring undocumented
immigrants to come forward, legalize their status, and learn English,
we would strengthen the rule of law and turn undocumented immigrants
into taxpayers.  The U.S. must enact a practical, fair, and reasonable
solution that includes smart enforcement measures."


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Comments

  1. Another voice's Avatar
    What can you expect fro FAIR, they like the stick your head in the sand approach, while we round them up and send them back. As if there were enough people in the US to replace these workers, soon with the baby boomer generation and the economy rebounding we will be right back here.
  2. newxgate's Avatar
    The authors of the CIS undoubtedly have an agenda, however the rebuttal by AILF is a bit simplistic, also. There is an excellent article over at the Washington Post (www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/30/AR2008073001936.html) that addresses the strengths and weaknesses of the CIS study quite comprehensively, I would urge anyone interested to give it a read.

    The problem with the AILF argument (that the drop in the undocumented population was due to economics), is that the CIS report addresses precisely this point. They found that the unemployment rate in the selected population did not increase over the same six month period in which that population decreased. Thus they argue that the decline was due to factors other than the economic downturn.

    The WashPost article contains a more compelling argument in my opinion against the conclusion that the enforcement only approach will halve the undocumented population in a matter of years. Quote :

    "Randolph Capps, a researcher with the Urban Institute who has studied the number of U.S. children born to illegal immigrants, cautioned against such reasoning.

    Even if all the findings in the study by Camarota and Jensenius prove correct, he said, it is probable that the first million illegal immigrants to leave were those who had arrived more recently and had the weakest ties to the United States.

    The remainder, including the more than half of illegal immigrant adults who have children in the United States, Capps said, are less likely to leave unless they are removed by the government. "
  3. George Chell's Avatar
    FAIR and CIS are racist organizations with racist agenda. FAIR has already been judged a hate group by SLPC. However, the issue is not whether illegal immigrants are leaving because of enforcement or the economy. Let us assume it is due to enforcement as CIS claims. But, CIS does not address the consequences of their leaving. Malarkey Malanga of the Manhattan Institute addresses it by saying that wages for Americans are going up. May be true. However, the price of a pound of tomatos is $4 or $5 depedning on the store you go, and this without higher wages. If wages start to increase, the FED has already given notice that it will raised interest rates pushing us deeper into recession. So the reasoning by Malarkey Malanga is just that..Malarkey.
  4. George Chell's Avatar
    Come November 4th, Dems will gain big in the Senate, marginalizing CIS cronies such as Sessions and DeMint.
  5. George Chell's Avatar
    May be declining, but like this...

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/07/31/navarrette.fatalbeating/index.html

    and CIS and FAIR by their racist attitudes encourage this type of behavior. With their attitudes it is a surprise that no foreign born professor or skilled immigrant has not been beaten up by thugs.
  6. JarJar's Avatar
    Surprise! Surprise! The deportations and employer prosecution tactics are working. When you punish the employer, the servants will leave.
  7. George Chell's Avatar
    "Surprise! Surprise! The deportations and employer prosecution tactics are working. When you punish the employer, the servants will leave."

    ...And prices will go up, inflation will increase, Fed raises interest rates, and surprise! surprise! we are in a recession..exactly what CIS and FAIR wants so that they can encourage people to beat up anyone who looks foreign. Good job America!! Good reasoning Jar Jar!!

  8. JarJar's Avatar
    George, you're so uptight. What is a little recession compared to the tremendous benefit of racial purity?
  9. George Chell's Avatar
    "George, you're so uptight. What is a little recession compared to the tremendous benefit of racial purity?"

    You have a recession. You have a budget deficit, and a bigger debt, foreigners, especially the Sovereign Wealth Funds start buying up America, then US looses its sovereignty, and guess what no more racial purity...that is right...foreigners will decide whether we sink or swim..good bye racial purity!

  10. JarJar's Avatar
    >> You have a recession. You have a budget deficit, and a bigger debt, foreigners, especially the Sovereign Wealth Funds start buying up America, then US looses its sovereignty, and guess what no more racial purity...that is right...foreigners will decide whether we sink or swim..good bye racial purity!

    Hah! I knew it that you were for racial purity all this time! It's just ....that our methods are different. You are ...more liberal.
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