Why Is Immigration Illegal Anyway?

Art Carden and Ben Powell ask that fundamental question, and answer it brilliantly:

American immigration restrictions have a long history, but they have never been a good idea. Economist Thomas Leonard documents how even some Progressive Era economists supported immigration restrictions and minimum wages because they wanted to shut members of what they called “low-wage races” out of the American labor market…

Fears that immigrants will wreck our economy are probably the biggest reason substantial barriers to legal immigration remain on the books. But immigrants don’t take our jobs, lower our wages or depress the American economy.

Virtually all economists who study immigration find that it provides a small but positive impact on the economy. It should be obvious that immigrants don’t steal jobs from the native-born. Since 1950, the labor force has more than doubled but long-run unemployment is essentially unchanged. As we’ve added more workers, we’ve added more jobs.

Read the whole thing here.


2 responses to “Why Is Immigration Illegal Anyway?

  1. What an incredible load of garbage. Our state governor (Vilsack, who is now Secretary of Agriculture) brought in tens of thousands of Mexicans to take over jobs that used to pay well and employed a huge segment of our workers. Now those workers are unemployed, or work for minimum wage, and the cities the Mexicans took over are ghettos. They don’t spend their money here; they live 10 or 12 people to an apartment and send their wages home to Mexico. It’s a loser all the way around. The United States is the only country in the world that refuses to close its borders. The only one.

  2. Controlled immigration can benefit a nation. Unrestricted immigration is very harmful. Why? It is simple. Immigrants that do not assimilate weaken the social fabric of the nation. Also immigrants put a heavy burden on public services. This burden easily swallows up any possible benefit brought to the nation by low wage immigrants. This is because there are fewer and fewer low wage jobs every year.

    Censorship is evil.