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Immigration and the US Economy

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With each passing year, the rate of illegal immigrants is increasing. Such is defined as the act of residing in a country without following the legal documentation and sans the permission of the government. The top countries homes to illegal immigrants are Russia, India, and the United States of America. In the US alone, there was an estimated figure of 11 million immigrants living illegally in 2014. This makes up 5 percent of the country’s labor population.

This issue sparks a change in the current administration as President Trump plans to abolish these illegal immigrants, mainly focusing on Mexicans, as swiftly as possible. Much of his efforts towards this aspect include limiting legal entries and terminating the DACA (The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program. By looking at his standpoint, there may be some serious effects on the country’s economy. How will these actions affect the America as a whole?

One of the reasons why the government is putting much effort and time into enforcing immigration paperwork requirements is the threat of terrorism-related fears pertaining to the 9/11 bombing. According to Federation for American Immigration Reform, all the terrorists acquainted with one of the worst catastrophes in the world were all foreigners with a temporary visa. They stayed in the United States more than their permitted time period. Officials of the country continue to put their best foot forward in order to protect their citizens.

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Some may wonder how the removal of the illegal immigrant labor force will affect the economy of the United States. The gross domestic product of the country may decrease with a staggering amount of $434 billion in just a year given if all undocumented employees are deported back to their own nations. The states that will be most affected are California, Florida, Texas, New Jersey, Illinois, and New York. As for the industries that will be impacted the most are those under food (restaurant), leisure, manufacturing, retail and wholesale employers. This probable result does not directly have a positive effect on US citizens who are eyeing for employment.

The scenario that is likely to happen is that instead of employers raising the wages for employees to attract US citizens to replace illegal immigrants, they will shrink their businesses and reduce hiring workers. One of the myths is that undocumented immigrants are stealing jobs from Americans. The US Chamber of Commerce stated that undocumented immigrants have a different set of skills than American workers. This connotes that they are not competing for the same work positions and jobs. Deporting them might greatly affect how businesses operate in America.

According to National Bureau of Economic Research, these illegal immigrants contribute $500 billion in a year. With this large figure, it may be a lingering thought if these individuals even pay taxes. They pay $11.64 billion a year through property taxes, income taxes and/or sales taxes. Given that those undocumented immigrants are handed down a legal status, the amount of taxes collected will increase by approximately $2.1 billion a year.

Besides the effects on employers, consumers will also be affected. Due to lack of farmers (which mostly constitutes to undocumented immigrants), the cost of the products will inevitably shoot up. This will, in turn, have a domino effect on restaurants and groceries on whom the farm companies supply their food products to. The worst scenario that could happen is for these businesses to close down permanently as they are not able to meet the demands of expenses incurred. After being aware of all the possible effects to the economy of removing illegal immigrants, the government may want to re-evaluate the pros and cons of these actions.

In fact, it has been reported in that President Donald Trump is still persistent in his campaign of eliminating illegal immigrants in the United States. For some, this might sound like a wrong decision, but it’s safe to say how the president longs for nothing but the best for its own citizens and country. It’s just a matter of time of how this move will turn out to be.