House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Lamar Smith (R-Texas) today responded to claims by Democrats that a massive amnesty would bolster the economy and help reduce the deficit.
"Democrats claim that amnesty would be a good thing for the American economy. But amnesty for 12 million illegal immigrants would require American citizens and legal immigrant taxpayers to dole out billions of dollars in benefits, while allowing illegal immigrants to permanently keep the jobs they've stolen from citizen and legal immigrant workers.
"Here are the facts:
* The total cost of K-12 education for illegal immigrant minors and U.S. born children of illegal immigrants is $28.6 billion per year (Federation for American Immigration Reform).
* The cost of healthcare for illegal immigrants under the new Obamacare could cost up to $30 billion.
* According to numbers provided by the Social Security Administration, the legalization of five million illegal immigrant couples who work for very low wages would be a $500 billion blow to taxpayers. Amnesty for all 12 million illegal immigrants would increase this figure.
* Low-skilled workers usually don't earn enough money to pay taxes, but they still receive a check from the IRS in the form of the Earned Income Tax Credit. Putting illegal immigrants on the IRS pay roll will actually cost the federal government money.
"Amnesty would devastate the economy and further burden citizen and legal immigrant families. We should put the interests of Americans first."