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Dear Editor:
Let me question some of the findings made by Steven Camarota in his report. First, if the population is in illegal status, mostly undocumented, are the calculations of tax payments and government services usage anything close to accurate? Where are the error margins? Is a guesstimate of $10 billion relevant for an $11 trillion economy? How do the costs compare to those of massive deportation and widespread enforcement? Is not better to have a factor lowering wages than exporting the jobs altogether? What are the comparable figures for certain U.S.-citizen groups? On that basis we may conclude that is economically sound to get rid of them too. Second, if the U.S. abandons the "jus solis" doctrine and does not grant citizenship to their children, it would only worsen the situation by creating a permanent class of social outcasts. Third, what are the benefit to the U.S. private sector in terms of lower labor costs and increased consumer base? Finally, it does not account for the long-term implications. This younger labor base, if motivated to increase its skills by entering the formal economy, can well counterbalance the aging of the U.S. population. Evidently, they will be in an improved bargaining position if they are allowed to operate as free agents of the economy. Their children could do far better. The conclusions may be right but, as presented, I believe this study produces no material evidence to support them.

Sebastian
Washington, DC



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