Illegal Immigration Hurts The Economy & Depresses Wages. Period.

Illegal Immigration Harms America’s Economy & US Workers

The left and the neocons screech at the same pitch when it comes to illegal immigration—they both love it.

Liberals get to “feel good” about helping poor, innocent dreamers (even if it’s our own people that are often the victims).  Meanwhile, the globalist elites (the plutocrats, politicians, and big business) are busy importing a pseudo-serf class to mow their lawns and clean their toilets.

Either way, both sides try to convince the average American that illegal immigration’s in their best interests.


They appeal to the lowest common denominator: the economy.

In this article, I’m going to walk you through some of the logic, and show you that illegal immigration is actually causing an economic disaster.

More Illegals Means More People—And Lower Wages For American Workers

You’ve heard of the law of supply and demand?  It’s how the free market determines prices.

When demand goes up, prices go up (more people bid up the price).  Conversely, when supply goes up, prices go down (there’s lots to go around, so there’s no urgency); and vice versa.

Supply and demand applies to the cost of gasoline, apples, and to a person’s labor—if lots of people can do your job, you’ll get paid less, since employers have their pick of the litter.

A bigger labor supply gives bargaining power to employers: they don’t have to pay a decent wage, since so many people want the job, and they don’t have to give you a raise—if you don’t like it, they’ll hire someone else who does.

They’ll hire an illegal.  Don’t like it?  Too bad.

The fact is that America’s labor market has been flooded with 11-33 million illegal immigrants (depending on who you ask) looking for work.

This drives wages down. Period.

Illegal Aliens Work Under The Table, For Cheap

Illegals work off-the-books, making less than minimum wage, and they don’t get benefits that citizen’s would get etc.

Basically, illegals undercut the labor market’s mandated floor, pulling the rug out from American workers—there’s no way a minimum wage worker can compete against someone working for $2 a day.

This means their impact on US wages is even bigger than it would otherwise be.

Wages aside, employers like to hire illegals because they have leverage over them: if the illegal misbehaves they can fire them no problem, and they can force them to work in crappy conditions that Americans wouldn’t.

This makes it impossible for American citizens to compete with illegal immigrants for the same jobs.

It’s why the youth unemployment rate is so high—fast food places used to be operated by teenagers, now they’re stuffed with illegals.

 Yes, Illegal Immigration Hurts The Economy illegal immigrants picking fruit
Only 10% of illegal immigrants work in the US agriculture industry—most work in services, contrary to what we’re constantly being told by the left. American agriculture would be fine. Farmers would just need to buy more tractors & equipment.

Debunking Some Common Leftist Lies About Illegal Immigration

I know what you’re thinking: (I) “we need illegals to do the jobs Americans won’t do,” or (II) “the economic benefits outweigh the costs”.

“Illegal Immigrants Do Jobs Americans Don’t Want To Do”

This isn’t true.  Why?

1.  There are 23 million unemployed Americans right now, and at least 11 million illegal immigrants—even if you deported every illegal and gave that job to an American, the unemployment rate would still be around 7% (we’re talking real unemployment, not the garbage “official” number).

2.  Americans are willing to work the jobs illegals do, and they currently work them in states where there aren’t illegal immigrants.

If you read this document published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, you’ll see that there are literally millions of Americans, white, black, and Hispanic, who are employed as janitors, laborers, store clerks—everything.

It’s simply not true that Americans won’t do these jobs—they can’t, because they’re being undercut by illegal immigrants.

Believe it or not, but people in states without illegal immigration (Montana or Ohio) can still afford McDonald’s and Starbucks—they just hire teenagers to do the jobs.

The same goes for entire countries, like Canada.

The fact is this: if we deported illegals from California, the labor market would begin to look more like Pennsylvania or Indiana—teenagers, and black or Hispanic Americans (who tend to be on the low-skills end of the labor market) would do the jobs, rather than be unemployed.

And even if there weren’t enough people, we could just automate.

A final note: there was a time before illegal immigration.

How do you think the jobs got done before that?

We hired teenagers and invested in better processes and technology to improve our efficiency.

“The Benefits Of Illegal Immigration Outweigh The Costs”


Illegals are a massive drain on government resources, which leads to higher taxes.

That’s not good for anyone.

Illegals cost American taxpayers well over $100 billion a year—not to mention all the indirect costs.

Just look at California: they spend almost 20% of their government budget on illegals.  What a waste.  Citizens could use that.

Citizens deserve that.

Likewise, the drain of wealth via remittances is significant ($38 billion a year), especially when you remember that most illegal immigrants are concentrated in a few states (California, Texas, New York, Florida, Arizona etc.).

We also need to look at the opportunity cost associated with our spending on illegals—what else could we spend the money on?

Infrastructure, for one.

The American Society of Civil Engineers predicts that America’s infrastructure deficit (the money we must spend to maintain our existing roads, ports etc.) will reach $3.6 trillion by 2020.

Insufficient infrastructure costs America money.

Lots of it.

For example, traffic jams cost America $124 billion a year—almost as much as illegals.  That’s obscene, but it’s true.

If we stopped government spending on illegal immigrants, we could cut our infrastructure deficit in half by 2020, and save a pretty penny on traffic jams and airport delays—not to mention the headaches.Japan vs USA GDP per capita

I’d also like to point out that the US is the only country in the West that imports millions of illegal immigrants to work in its service jobs—other rich places, like Japan or Canada, don’t.

The whole thing is a scam by the elites to better their quality of life at the average American’s expense.

As you can see, Japan’s GDP per person growth actually outpaced America’s during the period of high illegal immigration, despite the fact that Japan didn’t have any of the “advantages” of illegal immigration.

The mainstream narrative just doesn’t fit the facts.

It’s wrong.

Illegal Immigration Is Harming America, And Its Citizens

I’ll tell you what: university professors, senators, news anchors aren’t losing their jobs to illegals.

It’s guys who work construction.

Gals who work in malls.

Ordinary folk.

I can guarantee you that if all illegal immigrants were Pulitzer-winning writers and famous actors that the borders would be shut up tighter than the gated communities where Hollywood’s elites live.

So there you have it folks.  Illegal immigration isn’t the economic panacea it’s made out to be.

Time to wake up and build the wall—both physically and metaphorically.

Share Me

About Spencer P Morrison 160 Articles
J.D. B.A. in Ancient & Medieval History. Writer and independent intellectual, with a focus on applied philosophy, empirical history, and practical economics. Author of "Bobbins, Not Gold," Editor-In-Chief of the National Economics Editorial, and contributor to American Greatness. His work has appeared in publications including the Daily Caller, the American Thinker, and the Foundation for Economic Education.