by Daniel Greenfield
On August 15th, last week, the Obama administration began the implementation of the first mass amnesty for illegal aliens in 25 years. While the 1986 amnesty was at least a lawful act, the 2012 amnesty is an illegal and destructive piece of unilateral legislation from the executive branch.
“You can’t stop this force,” Democratic Senator Richard Durbin warned Republicans and law-abiding Democrats. “They are creating a moral force beyond a legal force.”
In Obama’s hometown of Chicago, over ten thousand illegal aliens lined up for a chance to become full participants in the social welfare and voter fraud machine of urban politics. With as many as 2 million illegal aliens potentially eligible to enter the legal workforce, these lawless lines are only the beginning. The act of filing an application, no matter how fraudulent, prevents deportation which turns Obama’s one-man DREAM Act into a free pass for any illegal immigrant willing to game the system.
The economic impact of Obama’s amnesty is nuclear and its biggest target is the American worker. Obama is the only occupant of the White House to have ended his term presiding over a nation with fewer jobs than when he took office. Over 4 million jobs vanished under Obama. Now 2 million more may be heading out the door.
The argument for illegal immigration amnesties is that America needs more unskilled workers to do the jobs that Americans won’t do or college graduates to do the jobs that Americans are too stupid to do. But at a time when as many as 30 million people are unemployed and the number of American workers is at its lowest point since the original amnesty, there is no question that we do not suffer from a shortage of skilled or unskilled workers. What we do suffer from is a job shortage.
The ugliest aspect of Obama’s amnesty is that the American workers who are hardest hit will be in the states with the highest unemployment rates. Ground zero for amnesty will also be ground zero for unemployment.
California, which has the nation’s highest population of illegal immigrants, also suffers from the third-worst unemployment rate in the country. Less than half of California’s population holds down a job and illegal immigrants will be entering those sectors of the job market — construction and manufacturing — which are already bleeding jobs.
Nevada has the highest unemployment rate in the country and is one of ten states with six-figure illegal alien populations. New York has the sixth highest unemployment rate and the third largest illegal alien population in the country. New Jersey has the fourth highest unemployment rate and the eight highest illegal alien population. Georgia and North Carolina have the sixth and seventh highest unemployment rates and the seventh and ninth highest illegal alien populations.
Of the ten states with the highest unemployment rates, half also top the list for illegal immigrant populations. Conversely the states with the lowest unemployment rates, North Dakota, South Dakota and Vermont, also have illegal alien populations of less than 2,500 each.
Of the ten states with the highest illegal immigrant populations, seven also had the highest poverty rates in the country. California is number one in both. Texas is number two in both. New York is number three in both. Illinois is number four in illegal aliens and number five in poverty rates. Florida is number four in poverty rates and number five in illegal aliens.
These numbers should be profoundly disturbing as they represent the economic indicators of our future. States with the highest numbers of illegal immigrants are sinkholes of poverty and unemployment. They are also the states that are bleeding taxpayers dry on social welfare spending.An estimated 2.5 billion dollars a year is spent providing Medicaid to illegal aliens and illegal alien households are grabbing another 2 billion in food stamps and free meals. In Los Angeles County, in just the month of August, LA County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich estimated that 36 million dollars in social welfare benefits were being consumed by illegal aliens that month alone.
Antonovich has estimated the cost of illegal immigration to Los Angeles County taxpayers at over one billion dollars a year. For the entire state of California, the costs have been estimated at over 21 billion dollars. For the top ten states the cost may exceed 70 billion dollars a year. Even for tiny Rhode Island the cost of the illegal invaders tops a quarter-billion dollars.
While states frantically raise taxes to meet the budget gap, the true budget gap is the living one made up of illegal aliens. Again the ten states with the largest budget shortfalls are mainly the same states with the highest poverty rates and the highest illegal immigrant populations. Once again California, Illinois, New York, Texas, Florida and New Jersey take top honors.
Nationwide the total cost to taxpayers may be as high as 113 billion dollars or a thousand dollars per household. California’s 21 billion dollar shortfall also happens to be the same as the statewide cost of illegal aliens. But rather than following Arizona’s lead by addressing illegal immigration, most states are raising taxes on everything they can think of and plowing that money back into social welfare spending on illegal aliens.
While the illegal ObamaCare mandate was justified as a way of forcing “free riders” to pay into the system for their emergency room visits, the real free riders are illegal aliens with an estimated 6 billion dollars in medical expenses, including a quarter-billion dollars in emergency room visits. What the mandate truly does is compel younger workers to continue subsidizing Obama’s illegal immigrant free riders—who include members of his own family.
The annual cost of the Obama amnesty to taxpayers has been estimated at 6.2 billion dollars a year, but that’s only a fraction of the true cost. The 1986 amnesty attracted large numbers of illegal aliens who assumed that another amnesty was coming. Obama’s unilateral amnesty does better than that by providing a compelling magnet policy that does not depend on a one-time bill. Obama’s amnesty will lead to a major spike in illegal immigration at a time when it had been in decline. It will destroy millions of American jobs, massively increase social services spending and drain state budgets while leaving destruction and misery in its wake.
On August 15th, a tactical strike was carried out against the American worker. And the full extent of the devastation is still to come.
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