Maria Fotopoulos, 6/7/2013 [Archive]

California Controller's Fantasy Vision

California Controller's Fantasy Vision

By Maria Fotopoulos

California state controller John Chiang, who oversees a $100 billion budget, recently strongly advocated for the amnesty and immigration reform package that's being debated in the Senate. With Chiang's nothing-but-blue-skies fantasy of only law-abiding, successful immigrants who will return California to halcyon days, swelling the state treasury in the process, it's no wonder California has suffered chronic, poor fiscal health for years.

Besides ultimately providing citizenship to millions of people who are in the country illegally, the plan would increase the number of people who could enter the country legally — even though the U.S. already has one of the most generous immigration policies in the world. By decade end, an estimated 33 million new workers may be competing in a job market that may offer about half that many new jobs, if we track along current job creation levels.

As with the 1986 amnesty, the result will be a still larger U.S. population, one that will grow well beyond the obvious numbers being bandied about, since new citizens can bring in various family members. Ponder 550 million people by 2050, 1.1 billion by 2100. With these U.S. Census Bureau estimates, we're well into India and China territory.

CAPS and other organizations that understand the issue know that this growth is unsustainable. This includes Negative Population Growth, which has stated that the U.S., closing in on a population of 316 million, "is already vastly overpopulated" and at double its carrying capacity.

This growth is amplified in California, which draws high numbers of both legal and illegal immigrants. Factor in that California has some of the highest unemployment rates in the country, and Chiang's position begs the question: why do we need to import workers?

The simple answer is: we don't.A study conducted by the Center for Immigration Studies suggested a correlation between unemployment among U.S. citizens and the growth in immigration numbers. According to the study, immigrant workers — primarily legal immigrants — have been the beneficiaries of two-thirds of the net employment increase since 2009, while certain segments of the adult U.S. population suffer persistent high levels of unemployment.

But as a career government employee turned career politician, it seems party line trumps all else for Chiang, even though holding a top finance position in the state would, theoretically, necessitate that he operate in the realm of sound fiscal management.

Unsustainable growth and an existing workforce not fully employed certainly are sufficient reasons alone to oppose the bill that would proffer amnesty and significantly increase legal immigration. But there are ample additional arguments why the amnesty bill runs counter to sound fiscal policy and just sound policy for America in general. Here is a big one.

The estimated lifetime fiscal cost of amnesty for those currently in the U.S. illegally is $6.3 trillion, according to The Heritage Foundation.

Chiang's position on immigration mirrors that of other elected officials who fail to represent the interests of U.S. citizens. Americans must defeat the amnesty plan being hoisted upon them by politicians who have placed citizen interest last. The cost to citizens is too high financially.

It's too high as well from a sustainability viewpoint.Even if immigration numbers are limited to replacement level, U.S. population will keep growing through this century due to the momentum of the last 30 years of immigration.

Copyright© 2013 Maria Fotopoulos. Maria is a Senior Writing Fellow for Californians for Population Stabilization (capsweb.org). Contact her at caps@capsweb.org. This column distributed by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate. For more info about using this column, contact Sales at sales@cagle.com.



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