By C. Mitchell Shaw
In his first full year in the Oval Office, Joe Biden has had several distinctions. And while most of those are measured in lows — as in the economy, jobs, approval ratings, and the like — his high point is the number of illegal immigrants who have skirted the law to enter America. According to a new report, that number is a whopping one million.
The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) reports that at the end of 2020, as Biden prepared for his inauguration, there were approximately 14.5 million illegal aliens living in the United States. But in the first year of the Biden administration — which dispensed with Trump-era policies enforcing immigration laws — that number has grown to an estimated 15.5 million.
Spencer Raley — research director at FAIR and author of the new report — told the Epoch Times, “Massive numbers of illegal aliens are coming into the United States and they’re staying here.” And while Democrats may waffle somewhere between thinking that is good news and not caring one way or the other, it is burdening an economy that is already struggling as a result of Biden’s other failures.
The report states:
Based on FAIR’s most recent comprehensive fiscal cost study, illegal aliens are likely imposing a net fiscal burden of at least $143.1 billion. That’s an increase of approximately $9.4 billion over the past year.
One need not have a degree in economics from an Ivy League college to see that those numbers are untenable (in fact, it may help if one does not have such a degree). Spending at that rate, the money adds up quickly.
But looking at more than just the surface costs, the study found that the deeper issue is one of the Biden administration ladling error upon failure, making things exponentially worse with each layer of misconduct. The report states that “this alarming increase in the illegal alien population can be attributed largely to two significant developments,” and lists the first reason as the “improvement of the United States’ economy as the country re-opens after the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.” While that may seem to have a least a partially positive element, consider that the country would not have needed to re-open if it had not shut down to begin with. Further, as a result of that re-opening:
Businesses are once again hiring, and many unscrupulous employers are using this as an opportunity to turn to reliably cheap labor to undercut the market and make up for lost profits resulting from economic shutdowns stemming from the pandemic.
These unethical hiring practices occur even though millions of Americans remain unemployed or underemployed.
So, in an effort to make up for substantial losses caused by Biden’s disastrous COVID lockdowns, unscrupulous employers ignore unemployed and underemployed Americans who are also hurting as a result of those policies and bring in cheap labor in the form of illegal immigrants. It is a double whammy for Americans, a short-term win for employers, and a smashing win for Biden and his ilk, who gain the votes of those illegal immigrants. And while this writer is fully aware (as is the reader) that illegal immigrants can’t legally vote, one report after another over the past few years shows that they do it anyway.
At any rate, employment in America that is below a level that the average American can accept and still meet his obligations is still substantially higher than what one can earn in Mexico or other nations — enough so to make illegally entering the United States attractive.
The second significant development cited by the study as being at the root of the flood of illegal immigration is laid even more directly at Biden’s feet. The study states that a “more significant factor fueling this increase is that the Biden administration has effectively abolished the mission of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), preventing the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) from securing our southern border, and implementing measures that encourage mass illegal immigration.”
The study lists as example of such policies such insanities as: “Record apprehensions at both the southern and northern Borders,” “Releasing tens of thousands of ICE-detained illegal aliens,” “Reinstating the Obama-era policy of catch-and-release,” “Halting Construction of the Border Wall,” “Gutting the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) and Asylum Cooperative Agreements (ACAs),” “Promising amnesty,” “Forbidding ICE from arresting immigration lawbreakers,” and “Continued abuse of Temporary Protection Status (TPS) programs.”
Compounding the problem is the fact that illegal immigrants who stay in America more than occasionally wind up having children here. That brings the number from 15.5 million to almost 21 million.
And while illegals are spread across the country, they make up a disconcertingly large percentage of the population in more than few American cities. In the metropolitan area of Miami, Florida, illegals make up more than 11 percent of the population. Fairfax County, Virginia is 7.7 illegal immigrants. Loudoun County, Virginia is close at 6.3 percent. In Houston, Texas, that number is almost 6 percent. San Diego County, California is at 5.7 percent, and Atlanta, Georgia has an illegal population of 5.5 percent.
Given that numbers like those can have a great impact on both elections and the economy of any of those communities, it is easy to see that this is a problem of major proportions. And when taken state by state instead of city by city, the problem really comes into focus.
According to the report, the state with the most illegal immigrants is unsurprisingly — California, with 3.2 million illegal immigrants. But the numbers are bad, even excluding California. Texas has 2.2 million, Florida has 1.1 million, and New York has 1 million.
And if FAIR has been able to do the math on the number of illegal immigrants in this country and the costs associated with their trespass, the Biden administration must know, as well. But knowing isn’t the same as caring. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, a Biden appointee, has brushed the problem away, saying that “many individuals who are unlawfully present in the United States have been contributing members to this country.”