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Will immigration reform harm economy?

Jonathan Horn, U-T SAN DIEGO

Friday, May 10, 2013

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Kelly Cunningham, National University System
Answer: Yes and no

Heritage correctly highlights unlawful immigrants tend to have relatively low education and work in relatively low wage jobs. Over their lifetime they are likely to consume more government services than pay in taxes. The report errs, however, by not considering significant benefits arising to the economy from undocumented workers moving out of the shadows and becoming full tax payers. It also does not consider the impacts from some of those immigrants being more able to move up the income ladder. In other words, the report only describes gross effects of unlawful immigration on the federal budget and not NET impact.