You cannot put a monetary value on human life. To do so would be one of the most dehumanizing acts one might consider. On the other hand, there is nothing wrong with an honest evaluation of the costs of various options for caring for or otherwise dealing with people on whom the government will need to expend resources.
In particular, what is to be said for the costs of dealing with illegal aliens? To begin with, if an effective job is done in allowing only legal migrants to enter the country, most of the issue goes away. But what of those who manage to arrive in the U.S. in violation of its immigration laws?
It shouldn’t come as much surprise that it’s cheaper to deport illegal migrants than it is to grant them amnesty and pay the inevitable welfare costs. In fact, it is six times cheaper to deport them. Especially for cash-strapped governments, not to mention the virtue of following the law, the choice seems obvious.
“The findings of this analysis show that the average cost of a deportation is much smaller than the net fiscal drain created by the average illegal immigrant. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) reported the average deportation cost as $10,854 in FY 2016. In FY 2012, ICE removed 71 percent more aliens with a similar budget, creating an average inflation-adjusted cost of $5,915. This compares to an average lifetime net fiscal drain (taxes paid minus services used) of $65,292 for each illegal immigrant, excluding their descendants. This net figure is based on fiscal estimates of immigrants by education level from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS).1 The total fiscal drain for the entire illegal population is estimated at $746.3 billion.”
That is an enormous amount of money. With a “total fiscal drain” for all the illegals approaching $1 trillion, the need to understand that our policy toward illegal aliens is screaming for our attention.
The document from which these statistics are drawn is voluminous, and is the result of thorough research. It also correctly points out that there are human costs here that cannot be quantified just as so many monetary units.
Nevertheless, despite what the left would have us believe, the ability of the central government as well as the states and cities to sustain the support of illegals is not without limits. Waiting around for those limits to test themselves is utterly irresponsible. Unfortunately, with the current compulsion on the part of some jurisdictions to maximize the number of illegals within their boundaries, that’s probably what will happen.
Source: Center for Immigration Studies