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Dear Editor:
Mr. Aguiar indicated in his letter that he is concerned that by using Census data based on immigrant households and "immigrant" taxes, we are undercounting taxes paid. Actually, that's precisely the reason AILA should have provided the source of the data they presented--so that one can determine what was considered an "immigrant" for purposes of paying taxes. If married couples, at least one of whom is an immigant, file jointly, then taxes paid by "immigrants" may well include the situation Mr. Aguiar describes. But we don't know that because of AILA's unsubstantiated statement. The whole issue of the value of immigrants as determined by the taxes they pay was framed by AILA, not by me. If readers have problems with me looking at the value of immigration in terms of taxes paid, then they should also have a problem with AILA even raising the issue in the first place.

Ali Alexander



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