Are Illegal Aliens Getting Shortchanged By Uncle Sam? Two Democrats Say So
Two ranking Democrats claimed at a House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration hearing last week that “undocumented immigrants” pay “billions more” in taxes than they receive in public services and benefits.
Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., stated that illegal aliens “pay $7 billion in sales and excise taxes, $3.6 billion in property taxes and $1.1 billion in income taxes every year.”
Without distinguishing between legal and illegal immigrants, Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-New York, simply declared that they “pay billions of dollars into programs for which they will never receive benefits themselves.”
Yet the lawmakers failed to see the big picture: how much illegal aliens cost this country. According to FAIR research:
At the start of 2023, the net cost of illegal immigration for the United States – at the federal, state and local levels – was at least $150.7 billion. FAIR arrived at this number by subtracting the tax revenue paid by illegal aliens – just under $32 billion – from the gross negative economic impact of illegal immigration, $182 billion.
FAIR notes that these are conservative numbers because a large percentage of illegal aliens who work in the underground economy frequently avoid paying any income tax at all. Furthermore, illegal aliens who pay no income taxes continue to receive government checks through refundable tax credit programs.
Unburdened by the financial facts, Jayapal – the subcommittee’s ranking Democrat – continued to reveal her slippery grasp of broader immigration issues when she complained about the Biden administration’s “heavy handed” border enforcement policies. A bizarre assertion in light of record numbers of illegal aliens being released into this country, and deportations running at historic lows.
Then, contradicting his own claims about evermore migrants being a financial boon for America, Nadler acknowledged that states and cities “need additional resources” to accommodate the influx. How many more “resources”? He didn’t offer any specifics, or clarity, on the subject.
The fact is, the numbers in the FAIR cost study are rising by the day. Though illegal aliens pay some taxes at the store or at the gas pump, etc., so does everyone else, and the lower educational attainment of migrants means lower earnings and less taxes paid overall.
In the meantime, other research presented to the subcommittee found that illegal aliens make extensive use of welfare. An estimated 59 percent of households headed by illegally present migrants use one or more major welfare programs, compared with 39 percent of households headed by the U.S.-born.
When leading congressional representatives spread false information and half-truths at congressional hearings, while blurring the line between legal immigrants and illegal aliens, Americans are asked to ignore the evidence they see every day around them. Congress should focus on making the real policy changes needed to secure our borders and stop the flood of illegal immigration.