New Deal Numerology: A Great Migration

Jan 31, 2013Tim Price

This week's numbers: 11.1 million; 900,000; 0.6%; $1.5 trillion; $25 billion

11.1 million... is a ubiquitous number. That’s how many undocumented immigrants currently live in the U.S. Deporting them all is the closest the GOP has gotten to proposing a public jobs program.

900,000... is a working number. That’s how many new jobs could be created through comprehensive immigration reform, and unlike the deportation plan, the listings wouldn’t all say “ideal candidate is suspicious of others, owns a German Shepherd, probably wears aviators.”

0.6%... is a helpful number. That’s the average wage gain native workers could see from immigration reform, assuming we expand the definition of “native” to include everyone whose grandparents happened to win the race across the ocean.

$1.5 trillion... is a growing number. That’s how much immigration reform could add to GDP in the next decade. And given the latest GDP report, we can’t afford to sacrifice growth because we hate having to press 1 on bank menus.

$25 billion... is a contributing number. That’s how much net revenue the CBO projects the U.S. would gain by creating a path to citizenship, since immigrants will pay more in taxes than they receive in services. So that’s where all the makers have been hiding.

Tim Price is Deputy Editor of Next New Deal. Follow him on Twitter @txprice.

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