Illegal Immigration is an Economic Poison Pill, Costs Taxpayers Billions Annually

By Spencer Morrison

The conversation surrounding illegal immigration is deeply personal for many people—it is emotionally-charged, raw, and politically divisive.

Debates often devolve into mud-slinging competitions, and arguments morph into feigned outrage or violent protests. But from an economic perspective, the question is settled science: illegal aliens cost taxpayers billions, impoverish American workers, and are completely unnecessary for America’s economic success.

To begin with, illegal immigrants are expensive.

According to the Federation for American Immigration Reform’s 2017 report, illegal immigrants, and their children cost American taxpayers a net $116 billion annually—roughly $7,000 per alien annually. While high, this number is not an outlier: a recent study by the Heritage Foundation found that low-skilled immigrants (including those here illegally) cost Americans trillions over the course of their lifetimes, and a study from the National Economics Editorial found that illegal immigration costs America over $140 billion annually. As it stands, illegal immigrants are a massive burden on American taxpayers—and



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