Welcome to America! According to MPI the Migration Information Source, “The Statue of Liberty, long the symbol of America's rich immigrant heritage, calls out to many foreign-born individuals and families,” come one; come all to the land of opportunities and freedom! Immigration is not a new issue for our country, by far, but illegal immigration in the United States has dramatically increased over the years. The 2007 Economic Report of the President states in Chapter 9, entitled Immigration, “it is unofficially estimated that between 11 and 12 million foreign-born persons reside in the United States illegally; almost one-third of the total foreign-born population and about four percent of the total U.S. population.” There is no doubt
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labor force has little to no impact on the wages of native workers. In fact, Daniel Altman, American author, journalist and economist, reports in his essay “Shattering Stereotypes about Immigrant Workers” that according to figures calculated by the Pew Hispanic Center, “About 20 percent of illegal immigrants work in construction, 17 percent in leisure and hospitality industries, 14 percent in manufacturing, and 11 percent in wholesale and retail trade” (683). These figures support the idea that, “... illegal immigrants do not just pick fruit, they do not just work off the books, they rarely earn less than the minimum wage, and they may even be raising employment without harming incomes” (683). Indeed, Altman affirms that jobs held by illegal immigrants are far from minimum- or - subminimum wage, in fact they may be paid the same as other workers in the company, with hourly rates ranging from $10 to $20 (684). Altman makes a valid point that the majority of illegal immigrants are working in big industries earning wages similar to those of natives which supports the claim of proponents.
According to supporters of immigration, U.S. born citizens and immigrants have a similar financial impact on the government. Stated in Chapter 4, entitled Immigration, of the 2005 Economic Report of the President, “The fiscal impact of immigration is the difference between how much immigrants pay into the government and the value of the