Editor’s Note: The Summer 2007 issue of The Social Contract, featured a special report discussing “How Many Illegal Aliens Are in the U.S.?” Contributors Diana Hull, James Walsh, Nancy Bolton, and Fred Elbel concluded that the illegal alien population may be far more than double the official Census Bureau estimates, and so the costs associated with our illegal alien population, including crime, health care, education, and job-market share, must surely be higher than the public has been led to believe.
The day after President Obama was re-elected, key figures in both the Democratic and Republican Parties began talking about the need for so-called “comprehensive immigration reform,” otherwise known as amnesty for illegal aliens .
Even conservative talk show host Sean Hannity, was spewing the new talking points, saying:
We’ve gotta get rid of the immigration issue altogether. It’s simple for me to fix it. I think you control the border first, you create a pathway for those people that are here, you don’t say you gotta home. And that is a position that I’ve evolved on. Because you know what—it just — it’s gotta be resolved. The majority of people here — if some people have criminal records you can send ’em home — but if people are here, law-abiding, participating, four years, their kids are born here... first secure the border, pathway to citizenship... then it’s done. But you can’t let the problem continue. It’s gotta stop.
Of course, as is usually the case, people often fail to learn from the lessons of history...
In 1986, President Ronald Reagan signed into law the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), which was co-sponsored by Congressman Romano Mazzoli (D-KY) and Senator Alan Simpson (R-WY), and granted amnesty to about 3 million illegal aliens, mostly from Mexico.
Prior to the act’s passage, we were told that the country’s illegal alien population was only about 1.5 million.
Though the American people were told that the Simpson-Mazzoli act would correct our “broken immigration system,” while ensuring that our borders would be defended, it quickly became obvious that we had been fed a lie.
Even President Reagan fell for the same rhetoric which we hear today from the open-borders crowd.
In his diary entry for October 16, 1986, Reagan wrote:
Al Simpson came by to see if he had my support. After 5 years of trying (during which I’ve been on his side) the House finally passed his immigration bill. They have one or two amendments we could do without but even if the Senate in conference cannot get them out, I’ll sign it. It’s high time we regained control of our borders and his bill will do this.
Does anyone (besides Janet Napolitano) believe that we actually “regained control of our borders”?
So, just how many so-called “new Americans” are we talking about this time around?
For many years, the federal government told us that there were 12 million illegal aliens living in the United States. However, the actual number is more than likely, three to four times as high.
The way the feds arrive at their numbers is as absurd as their assertion that we can maintain law and order without actually defending our borders.
Washington arbitrarily estimates that every year since 1986, a half million illegal aliens take up residence in this country, either by over-staying their visa or by crossing into this country illegally. Additionally, they believe that the one million illegal aliens who did not qualify for the 1986 Amnesty (many were criminals), simply stayed anyway.
When you multiply a half million by 25 years, then add the additional million criminal aliens to the total, you have 13.5 million illegal aliens.
Then, in 2010, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that the number of illegal aliens in the United States had dropped to only 10.8 million.
Of course, that figure was only an estimate, and considering the source…questionable at best.
DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said that the new number could be attributed to tougher enforcement measures, and has repeatedly claimed that 35 percent of the U.S./Mexican border is now “effectively controlled.”
This laughable claim was seen by many as merely another ploy to sell amnesty legislation to the American people, who have consistently and overwhelmingly rejected the legalization of millions of criminal aliens.
However, using the Border Patrol’s own data, the numbers being presented publicly by the federal government seem rather implausible.
Between 1987 and 2005, the average annual number of apprehensions made at the U.S./Mexican border was roughly 1.3 million, with arrests reaching a peak of 1.6 million in 2000.
Over the last few years, that number has dropped.
Between 2006 and 2010, the average annual number of apprehensions was roughly 650,000.
While many individual Border Patrol agents estimate that for every one illegal crosser they catch, another seven or even ten successfully enter the U.S., those reports are difficult to substantiate, as no agent is willing to go on record with such inflammatory data.
However, in June 2010, former president of the National Border Patrol Council, T.J. Bonner told Fox News that for every person caught trying to enter this country illegally over the U.S./Mexican border, at least two more successfully make it here.
“We’re about 33 percent effective. It’s like shoveling sand against the tide,” said Bonner.
So, using Bonner’s rather conservative estimate, 41.8 million illegal aliens have entered the U.S. since the 1986 amnesty.
When one considers the relative ease with which drug smugglers and illegal aliens make multiple crossings into this country, and the lackluster immigration enforcement of every administration since that of Dwight D. Eisenhower, it is safe to assume that the actual figure is even higher.
The Obama administration has claimed that they deported close to 400,000 individuals in 2010.
But, not all of those deported actually entered the country illegally. DHS also deports those who entered the country legally on legitimate visas, but who either committed a crime while here or simply overstayed their visa.
So, we do not know exactly how many removals involved those who crossed into the U.S., by eluding the Border Patrol. However, when the DHS is deporting 400,000 foreign nationals while an estimated 1 million crossed the border illegally that same year, it is obvious that the federal government is losing ground each and every year.
Furthermore, when you consider that all of the amnesty bills proposed since 2006 contain a provision to eventually allow each amnestied illegal alien, to then bring 4 to 5 relatives to the U.S., you are looking at a truly astounding number of individuals.
If Congress does pass an amnesty bill, the resulting chain-migration could translate into an additional 200 million new U.S. citizens, or legal residents, practically overnight. Such an action would strain the public schools and our healthcare and court systems well past the breaking point, and result in the destruction of the Social Security program.
Where would these people live?
How would municipalities suddenly provide water and emergency service to these people?
This sudden influx would quickly overwhelm our landfills and trigger an ecological disaster.
In short, as Obama has promised...it would “fundamentally transform” this country and secure our place among the list of history’s failed societies.