Thursday, July 30, 2009

New Study on the Decline of Undocumented Population

A new study by the Center for Immigration Studies, which supports restrictions on all immigration, claims that the undocumented population has declines 14% over the last two year -- in Arizona even more dramatically by a third. Most immigration study groups generally agree that the undocumented population is stabilizing because of enhanced enforcement and the down-turn in the economy. But there is wide disagreement on how much a decline, why and the make of the decline. CIS claims a "significant number" is due to the undocumented returning home. The Pew Hispanic Center does disagree that some are going back, but attributes most of the decline to new immigrants not coming .There is a suspicion that the differences are ideological. CIS supports the argument that tough enforcement will entice, if not push, the undocumented out of the country. Whereas Pew argues that most undocumented don't have much to go back to in Mexico and will sit out the recession. Not all see the decline of the undocumented population, especially in Arizona where it has been most severe, as a good thing. Even the undocumented are consumers, and the loss of that many consumers in the Phoenix area will impact adversely on business. (See Arizona Republic article.)

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