S. 744: Here Comes Trouble
The immigration “Gang of Eight” has been instrumental in bringing Comprehensive Immigration Reform (S. 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act) to Congress in 2013.
Congress asked the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to examine S. 744. The CBO did, looking only at the effects of the first ten years of the bill. Knowing that, the “Gang of Eight” wrote the bill so that long-term effects don’t kick in until after the tenth year. What does all of this mean? TROUBLE!
One of the major provisions of S. 744 is the “path to citizenship.” A new “registered provisional immigrant” (RPI) status for eligible undocumented immigrants (illegal aliens) would be created. Those in RPI status also qualify for a Social Security number and state driver’s license. All registered immigrants (and spouses and children) could, after 10 years, seek to become lawful permanent residents (LPRs). Three years later, they would be eligible to apply to become US citizens. The only requirement is that aliens be in the US as of December 31, 2011.
The Heritage Foundation also examined S. 744, and their conclusions are, at best, disturbing. They examined the bill from three perspectives: reducing flow, effects on workers, and cost.
- Reducing flow (of illegal aliens): S. 744 would, according to the CBO, reduce the future inflow of illegal immigrants into the US over the next two decades by only 25 percent, despite promises of a secure border. CBO estimates that by 2033, 7.5 million new illegal immigrants will have entered the US and taken up residence. Gosh, I may be naïve, but I’ll bet that they ALL will say they were here before December 31, 2011.
- Effects on Workers: The CBO estimates that per capita Gross National Product (GNP) would lower by .7 percent by 2023, and per capita GNP will be lower until 2031. Further, the CBO estimates the bill would drive down their average wages for legal American workers. Wages will be depressed until 2024. It is important to measure post-tax wages as well as per capita GNP.
- Cost: Robert Rector of The Heritage Foundation estimates that the new 7.5 million illegal immigrants could cost the taxpayers (federal, state, and local) an additional $400 billion over 20 years. Rector comments:
“S.744 provides only a temporary delay in eligibility to welfare and entitlements. Over time, S.744 makes all 18.5 million [11 million here now plus 7.5 million new ones] eligible for nearly every government program, including: Obamacare, 80 different welfare programs, Social Security and Medicare. When this occurs, spending will explode, but nearly all the real costs do not appear in the CBO score.”
“… the most significant costs during the lifetime of would-be legalized immigrants are during their retirement years after they qualify for Medicare and Social Security. For the vast majority of unlawful immigrants, that is well past the 10-year budget window.”
Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, said:
“The bill’s drafters relied on the same scoring gimmicks used by the Obamacare drafters to conceal its true cost from taxpayers and to manipulate the CBO score. There is a reason why eligibility for the most expensive federal benefits was largely delayed outside the 10-year scoring window: to mislead the public.” [emphasis mine]
And, the “11 million” illegal aliens already here have established a track record. For example:
- Fifty percent of all immigrant households with children used at least one welfare program, compared to 32 percent for non-immigrants.
- Fifty seven percent of households headed by an immigrant with children used at least one welfare program, compared to 39 percent for non-immigrant households with children.
- Immigrant households’ use of welfare tends to be much higher than non-immigrants for food assistance programs and Medicaid. A large share of the welfare used by immigrant households with children is received on behalf of their US-born children.
- Welfare use tends to be high for both new and established immigrants. Sixty percent of immigrant headed households with children who arrived since 200 used at least one welfare program.
Does anyone believe that the new illegal immigrants will be any different? If so, I own a bridge in which you may be interested.
BTW, the term “Gang of Eight” is applied to any bi-partisan group of eight Senators. There is presently a “Gang of Eight” for intelligence. Don’t be confused by that term.
But that’s just my opinion
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