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Illegal immigrants by the numbers.

May 17, 2018

Some Republicans in Congress have suddenly gotten all excited about passing “immigration reform ” to deal with the problem of illegal immigration.

Now, far be it from us to ever complain about Congress doing its job, especially in light of President Trump’s call for Congress to actually do some work from now until the November elections.

Border security, dealing with sanctuary states and cities and DACA should have already been addressed within the last 17 months. But WTH, better late than never.

Of course to deal effectively with immigration it might be helpful to know just how many people, legal and illegal are already here.

Conventional reporting estimates the number of illegal immigrants at between 11 and 12 million, but some people question that number since there has never been a foolproof way to count them.

The best source so far seems to be a September 2016 Pew Research  report called Overall Number of Illegal Immigrants Holds Steady since 2009 that details not just illegal immigrants of Hispanic origin, but all illegal immigrants, as well as showing which states are the most impacted by them.

As far as total migration into the U.S., Pew’s numbers validate the claim that the U.S. harbors far more immigrants  (46.6 million) than any other country, probably partially because it’s larger land mass can absorb more people, but also due to its lax border security and failure to keep tabs on people who overstay their temporary visas.

If one-fourth of those 46.6 million people are illegal that’s a significant number of people we can’t plan our state and national spending to accommodate.

To understand the impact of that inability to plan, we need only to look at California and the effect its sanctuary state policies have had on the quality of life in that state.

That, as much as any other reason, proves we need some way to get a handle on who is entering the country, and what the chances are that they will actually assimilate into our culture.

To do that, we need a reasoned and sane immigration and border control policy.

If, and it’s a monumental if, Congress thinks it can get that done by election day, then by all means it should get cranking.

But if all this is going to do is touch off a  firestorm of claims of racism and calls to end white privilege, then we may as well wait and see if the GOP can hold both houses of Congress in November.

From → op-ed

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