- Most illegal immigrant households take in more taxpayer-supported welfare dollars than they ever contribute, a new study has found
The Obama administration and its sycophantic followers on the Left have often claimed that illegal aliens are not eligible for, and do not receive, American taxpayer benefits, but are nonetheless “expected” to pay taxes. That bothers a lot of lefties, especially the uber-lib beat writers over at The Huffington Post like Dana Liebelson who think that if they use the politically correct phrase “undocumented immigrants” they can pretend that people who are “undocumented” are really in the country “illegally,” and ought to be damned glad that we have a president who isn’t rounding them up and bussing them back home. That they are paying any taxes is irrelevant, considering they’re not even supposed to be in the country at all.
But we digress. In fact, illegal immigrants (we don’t subscribe to the Left’s PC language here) do indeed cob their “fair share” of U.S. taxpayer-supported welfare benefits, and actually have for years.
As noted by David Inserra, a research associate with the Heritage Foundation, in a new report on the issue, the typical American household received, on average, $31,584 in government benefits and services (like Social Security, unemployment insurance, means-tested welfare programs, public education and local services like police and fire protection and EMS) in 2010.
That said, he points out that not every household saw a net gain in government benefits; higher income households, he says, are more like tax contributors, not tax absorbers (meaning they pay more in taxes than they receive in benefits). Other households, he contends, are the opposite – the take more than they give.
According to Inserra:
- The typical household headed by a college-educated person paid $54,089 in taxes while receiving just $24,839 in government benefits.
- The average American household headed by a person without a high school diploma paid just $11,469 in taxes while receiving $46,582 in government benefits.
These numbers are not insignificant, he points out, because the average illegal immigrant would fall on the “tax consumer” side of the equation. In fact, he found that half of illegal immigrant households are headed by people with less than a high school diploma, while one-quarter have only a high school diploma.
By granting illegal immigrants amnesty, he explains, they will enter the welfare system and drain the treasury of funds:
- The average illegal immigrant is 34 years old. If he receives amnesty, he will receive government benefits for 50 years. Some amnesty proposals suggest restricting benefit access for the first 13 years after amnesty, but that limit would have little impact on long-term costs.
- Over the course of a lifetime, 11.5 million illegal immigrants granted amnesty would receive $9.4 trillion in government benefits after paying just $3.1 trillion in taxes.
“Notably,” states a National Center for Policy Analysis review of Inserra’s work, “illegal immigrants are already receiving significant amounts of government benefits…”
Further, the NCPA review states:
In 2010, the typical illegal immigrant household received $24,721 in government benefits but paid just over $10,000 in taxes — an annual benefit of more than $14,000 per household. Illegal immigrants not only receive the benefits of government services (like fire and police protection), but their children receive public education. Additionally, children of illegal immigrants that are born in the United States are eligible for the full spread of government welfare benefits, including Social Security and Medicare.
Now, of course, Americans have learned since President Obama’s (unconstitutional) executive amnesty last month, the newly minted pseudo-citizens will be eligible to receive Medicare and Social Security – you know, because they’ll be paying in and such.
Only, as Inserra notes, they pay-in will be much less than the pay-out, and that’s ugly public policy – not to mention constitutionally questionable – given that both are on pace to become insolvent in the not-too-distant future.
This phenomenon is not new, by the by. Judicial Watch, a legal watchdog organization based in Washington, D.C., reported on a study in 2011 that cited U.S. Census data which showed “that most U.S. families headed by illegal immigrants use taxpayer-funded welfare programs on behalf of their American-born anchor babies.”
Further, JW reported, citing the data:
Even before the recession, immigrant households with children used welfare programs at consistently higher rates than natives, according to the extensive census data collected and analyzed by a nonpartisanWashington D.C. group dedicated to researching legal and illegal immigration in the U.S.
The results, published this month in a lengthy report, are hardly surprising.