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Conservative Review

The truth behind the numbers: Foreign-born jobs up, American-born jobs unchanged

The Obama administration is gleefully trumpeting the news out today that 271,000 new jobs were created in October and the unemployment rate is relatively low – ticking down to 5%.  The problem? All of the decline in joblessness can be attributed to an increase in employment among foreign-born workers relative to their share of the population.  In fact, among American-born workers the number of unemployed increased.

As you can see from the first table, the number of foreign-born unemployed in this country decreased by 57,000 – from 1.204 million to 1.147 million.

Meanwhile, the number of unemployed native-born Americans increased by 27,000.

This is why the unemployment rate among native-born Americans remained unchanged in October while the rate among foreign-born workers declined from 4.6% to 4.4%.

Remember, although the foreign-born population is close to an all-time high, immigrants still represents only 13.5% of the population.  Relative to the population growth, almost all of the net increase in new jobs over the past decade has benefited immigrants.

You might argue that this represents good news, at least for immigrant families.  We certainly want nothing more than upward mobility for immigrants.  But according to Pew, their poverty rate is at an all-time high.

In 1970, the poverty rate among immigrants stood at 18%, only slightly higher than the 14% of the native-born population.  Now the poverty rate among immigrants has grown to 28% compared to 15% among Native Americans.  Concurrently, 87% of illegal immigrant families and 72% of legal immigrant families are on welfare.

Increased poverty and welfare usage among immigrants, yet increased employment?  What gives?

This dichotomy is a clear illustration that the influx of low skilled workers, largely from the third world, is doing nothing to grow the economy and create upward mobility for immigrants and natives alike.  It is an open borders scam to reduce wages and employ record numbers of immigrants at wages oriented towards the third world instead of the standard of living Americans are used to.  Ultimately, the taxpayers have to foot the bill for the lower wages championed by the business community.

This, at its core, is why Milton Friedman warned that you can’t have open borders and a welfare state.

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