Greenspan Says Illegal Immigration Aids U.S. Economy (Update1)Of course, "the economy" consists of a variety of winners and losers from illegal immigration.
By Nicholas Johnston
April 30 (Bloomberg) — Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said that illegal immigration makes a ”significant” contribution to U.S. economic growth by providing a flexible workforce.
Greenspan, appearing before a Senate subcommittee today, said illegal immigrants provide a ”safety valve” as demand for workers rises and falls.
”There is little doubt that unauthorized, that is, illegal, immigration has made a significant contribution to the growth of our economy,” Greenspan said. An overhaul of U.S. immigration laws is ”badly needed” to create legal avenues for skilled and unskilled workers to enter the country legally, he said.
”Our immigration laws must be reformed and brought up to date,” Greenspan told the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security. [More]
Winners: The illegals themselves, and their employers. Losers: American workers and taxpayers.
Update: A reader writes
"If, as he says, illegal aliens add 'flexibility' to our economy, then shouldn't they be leaving when we're in a recession like now? Seems to me his comments are a better argument for NOT legalizing illegal aliens and requiring employers to use existing guest worker programs."
In fact, they should go back, because it's cheaper to be poor Mexico than it is in the United States, but they're staying because there's a lot of money around even if you're unemployed, much of it provided by the American taxpayer