The Causes and Costs of Illegal Immigration Through the United States’ Southwest Border (Introduction)

A Report by Dr. Peter Navarro. Released February 2020.

This report was originally prepared by my office while I was still in the White House but never released as events related to the pandemic overtook the issue of illegal immigration. With the Biden-Harris Regime now intent on opening America’s Southern border to a new flood of illegal immigrants, this updated version of the report becomes critical.

As you will see in these pages, illegal immigration inflicts massive costs on the American taxpayer and the working poor of our nation. With so many challenges facing our country, it is both astonishing and regrettable that the Biden-Harris Regime has prioritized a set of policies that will simultaneously further disadvantage millions of jobless Americans while imperiling US national security, leaving our homeland vulnerable to the free flow of drugs, weapons, and possible terrorists into the United States.

Clearly, elections have consequences. Stolen elections have even greater consequences as an open border is clearly not the will of the American people.

-Peter Navarro February 18, 2021

Foreword by Steve Cortes
Illegal migration has vexed the United States for decades. Donald Trump prevailed in 2016 largely on a promise to finally confront this massive threat to America’s sovereignty and prosperity. His first term accomplishments proved the efficacy of smart, tough policies regarding immigration and border defense. But with a Biden presidency, powerful interests align to roll back the Trump progress and regress to an era of porous borders and nearly open-ended migration into America. Such a retreat will reward big business seeking cheap labor and the Democratic party luring new constituents. But a massive new inflow of migrants, both legal and illegal, will bring grave harm to working class Americans, lowering wages, inflicting gigantic costs upon taxpayers, and jeopardizing US national security.
Regrettably, Biden finds many allies among establishment Republicans in his efforts to open our borders. Some in Congress, like Senator Marco Rubio, openly cooperate with George Soros backed groups pushing mass amnesty for illegal aliens. In contrast, patriotic leaders of the America First movement push back against such dangerous posturing.

In this critically important report, former top Trump White House economic advisor Dr. Peter Navarro lays out the statistical case for asserting American sovereignty and protecting the prerogatives of American citizens, especially working-class Americans who are disproportionately harmed by the folly of permissive migration policies. Navarro harnesses his academic training as a Harvard PhD and University of California professor of economics to document the reality of illegal immigration’s staggering costs.

Porous borders are never a good idea for America, but least of all in a time of pandemic and widespread concomitant economic uncertainty. Navarro’s report should be used as the primary data-driven reference point to apply maximum political pressure to Republicans, especially in the Senate, to hold the line and defend American workers from the globalist designs that would effectively vaporize our borders. The America First movement should prioritize three main points in this effort: protecting working-class citizens, communicating the true costs of illegal migration, and embracing the political benefits and popularity of border sovereignty.

Protecting Working-Class Citizens
After decades of stagnation for blue-collar laborers, President Trump’s America First economic policies proved the efficacy of economic nationalism in producing broad prosperity. Through toughness in trade, regulatory restraint, tax relief, and border control, Trump ushered in astounding pre-pandemic gains for workers. For the full year 2019, before the CCP Virus ravaged the world economy, overall wages grew 6.8%, an all-time record. The gains were even more pronounced for blue-collar workers and for minorities, as blacks and Hispanics saw even faster wage acceleration above 7%. In actual dollar terms, the median household saw incomes climb $4,379 in 2019. To put that number in context, that year alone represented over $1,300 more in income gains, by itself, than the entire eight years of the Obama-Biden administration. These wage increases sent the US poverty rate to a 60 year low. During the first three years of the Trump presidency, 2.8 million American children were lifted out of poverty.
Those advances were artificially interrupted by the malfeasance of the Chinese Communist Party, which knowingly infected the world and crashed the global economy. But, from here, the biggest threat to the tenuous American recovery from the virus is no longer the CCP, but rather the prospect of flooding a recovering American labor market with potentially millions of workers, most of them willing to work for scant pay, as documented exhaustively by Navarro in this report.

Such concerns are not exclusively found on the political right, as even Senator Bernie Sanders recognizes the folly of porous borders, stating that such ideas about massive new immigration are a “Koch brothers proposal” meant to depress wages for US citizens. In fact, Joe Biden may want to reconsider the bust of labor organizer Cesar Chavez now positioned in the Oval Office, as Chavez advocated harshly against illegal immigrant labor competing against his citizen union members, even using risible derogatory terms to describe such foreign trespassers.

Regardless of partisan leanings, the historical evidence and common-sense demand that America pay particular attention to prioritizing American labor at a time of a still-tenuous economic recovery. Through the lenses of both policy and politics, guarding our borders to shield American workers from unnatural and unfair competition makes eminent sense.

The True Costs of Illegal Migration
In addition to the opportunity costs of lost wages and diminished opportunities for American citizens, our country also endures the staggering toll of the explicit outlays generated by mass illegal migration. Already strained federal, state, and local budgets also spend immense sums of taxpayer funds on services for illegals. If Biden’s full radical immigration agenda becomes a reality, these expenditures will certainly soar. This Navarro report carefully details the vast expenditure already required for illegal aliens who increasingly claim benefits originally intended for citizens. For example, Medicare in California is open to all residents, included those in America illegally. Add in public-school spending for children here illegally plus housing and adjudication costs for largely bogus asylum claims, and the total government outlays for illegal migration soar north of $100 billion annually.

In addition to the colossal financial costs, the human toll of porous borders inflicts totally unnecessary misery upon both American citizens as well as the illegal migrants themselves. Most illegal migrants arrive without criminal intent beyond their unlawful trespass into our country. But a very dangerous minority of these migrants terrorize American streets and attack American citizens in 100% preventable crimes. For example, the vicious MS-13 transnational gang now operates broadly throughout America, often gaming asylum practices to lure new gang members from Central America. The victims of their crimes, notably, are almost always American citizens of Hispanic descent. This reality belies the liberal fallacy that immigration enforcement is somehow inherently bigoted. In reality, minority Americans suffer disproportionately from the unfair wage competition and also from the crime perpetrated by dangerous illegals. Tragic examples abound, such as Sandra Duran of Los Angeles, a young Hispanic mother who was killed in cold blood by Estuardo Alvarado, who had been previously deported five times yet operate with impunity in the so-called “sanctuary” jurisdiction of Los Angeles. Sandra Duran’s sister, a Los Angeles Police Department officer, said the violent death was “a great concern because it could have been prevented.” Officer Morales continued: “It’s sad and it’s unfortunate. It’s going to happen not just to my family but to other families.”

Politics of Border Enforcement
Asserting American sovereignty and protecting US workers garners strong and growing support politically. Biden and his radical allies increasingly find themselves on the wrong side of this political debate. As such, America First nationalists should not flinch. For example, Morning Consult polled voters about the slew of executive orders unleashed by Biden after his inauguration. Most of the actions, for now, found widespread popularity – except…for the immigration-related ones. In fact, of the bottom 7 out of 28 orders that were surveyed, 5 of them pertained to borders and immigration. By far the least popular executive action so far: Biden’s move to expand by six-fold the total number of refugees America accepts, in the middle of a pandemic. This polling validates earlier exit-polling of November 2020 voters by Zogby that found 76% of Americans favor lowering levels of even legal immigration as long as joblessness remains elevated from the CCP Virus fallout (download file here). 

In addition, President Trump’s surge among Hispanic voters should embolden populist nationalists that the cause demonstrates wide appeal, across racial, ethnic, and geographic strata. Specifically, President Trump earned shocking levels of new support all along the counties on the US side of our southern border. For example, Starr County, Texas is the most Hispanic county in America, at 96% Latino. Trump did not quite win Starr County, but he gained an astounding 55% on margin. In 2020 he narrowly lost the county by 5% after getting drubbed by 60% in 2016. In next door Zapata County, which is 86% Hispanic, Trump gained 38% on margin to win the normally Democratic stronghold in 2020. 

Far from Texas, in deeply blue Los Angeles County, Trump gained over 500,000 raw votes and increased 4% on margin vs. 2016. In Florida, Hispanics powered the impressive repeat win for Trump, as he evenly split the Hispanic vote in the Sunshine State, per CNN. Clearly, Hispanics rallied to the America First agenda, from urban Mexican-Americans to South Florida citizens of Venezuelan descent. Hispanic citizens clearly believe in strong borders, and benefit appreciably from economic nationalism.  
In his momentous July 2020 speech at Mt. Rushmore, President Trump proclaimed that the United States “represents the culmination of thousands of years of Western Civilization.” The nation-state remains integral to that civilization. Accordingly, patriots across America must vigorously oppose the globalist designs of Biden and his Davos-adoring allies. The oligarchs of big business, the permanent political class, and corporate media seek trans-national constructs which undermine sovereignty for their own narrow self-aggrandizement, to the detriment of the masses of US citizens. In contrast, America First proponents boldly embrace the principles of muscular and enlightened nationalism. The Navarro Report on Immigration provides the numeric and academic framework to propel this great cause.