African Americans are the Racial Group Most Opposed to Immigration
A new Harvard-Harris poll shows that 85 percent of black Americans want a reduction in immigration levels to 1 million or lower. Also interesting: more Americans favored zero immigration, than wanted to increase immigration levels.
For context, in 2017 over 1.4 million legal immigrants arrived in America, while the number of illegals is unknown.
This means that black Americans—not white as is commonly stated—are the racial group most opposed to immigration. The Washington Free Beaconsummarizes the report’s findings nicely:
The plurality of respondents, 35 percent, think that there should be between 1 and 250,000 legal immigrants arriving to the United States per year. A net 12 percent want to see immigration increased to 1.5 million people per year or more, while nine percent of Americans think that there should be no new legal immigrants.
Plurality preference for between 1 and 250,000 new immigrants a year persists across white, Hispanic, and black Americans, as well as moderates and self-identified Democrats. . .
Americans prefer a system of prioritizing would-be legal immigrants based on their ability to contribute, based on their education and skills, over one based on immigrants having relatives in the United States, 79 to 21 percent. That includes a majority of white (79 percent), Hispanic (72 percent), and black (85 percent) citizens, as well as majorities of Democrats (72 percent), liberals (65 percent), and Clinton voters (72 percent).
The poll clearly shows that the majority of Americans are against mass immigration, and that support for this crosses racial and ideological lines.
This is somewhat surprising, as the Democratic Party has positioned itself as the “immigration party”, and is absolutely dedicated to preserving the doctrine of “open borders” at any cost. However, this position seems untenable in the long run—the voter base eventually catches up to the rhetoric, and at that point the Democrats will be finished.
Of course, these findings are consistent with other polling done on the topic of immigration. For example, research done by Pulse Opinion Research found that voters in “swing states” favored comprehensive immigration reform by a 3:1 margin—immigration reform is the winning-ticket.
Why are Black Americans Against Immigration?
Black Americans oppose immigration because they are the racial group most likely to be harmed by mass immigration.
As you can see in the adjacent graph, the vast majority of immigrants coming to America come for non-economic reasons: 44 percent of all immigrants are “immediate relatives of US citizens” and a further 20 percent are “family-sponsored preferences”. Only 14 percent of immigrants are chosen for purely economic reasons.
The majority of these immigrants, therefore, lack economic skills, and therefore end up working in relatively low-skilled occupations. Likewise, they are a net drain on America’s welfare apparatus.
This puts pressure on black American families, who are more likely than are white Americans to work in low-skilled occupations. Therefore, they are the ones who bear the brunt of immigrant labor competition. Likewise, the government services that many black families use are spread more thinly.
Here’s a brief survey of the data, as found in our piece on the economics of immigration:
A recent, and extremely comprehensive study produced by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine looked at the impact of mass immigration on America’s economy. The study is important for two reasons. First, it found that immigration has negatively impacted wages and employment opportunities for American citizens—especially those in lower income brackets. Of course, this is not surprising for anyone familiar with the economic principle of supply and demand, but it does come as a major shock to liberals who are now being forced to choose between their traditional voter base (blue collar workers and ethnic minorities) and recent immigrants.
Second, the study supports the RAISE Act’s underlying premise: not all immigrants are equal in terms of their economic value. Although the researchers concluded that immigration has historically provided a (minor) net economic benefit to America, it also found that nearly 100 percent of immigration-driven economic growth accrued to the immigrants themselves—the pie got bigger, the slices did not.
Likewise, the researchers found that nearly half of all immigrants were a net drain on the economy, and were balanced out by the other half. Specifically, most of those who arrived to America via the process of chain migration, as well as asylum seekers, cost a net present value of $170,000. Net present value simply means how much money the government would need to invest today, at a yield of inflation plus three percent, to pay for said immigrant’s tax deficit over the course of their lifetime.
Of course, the government does not do this—it spends only as it receives. Therefore, net present value generates an artificially low estimate. According to the Heritage Foundation, each non-economic immigrant more realistically costs a net of $476,000 in welfare payouts. This means that at current immigration levels, the next ten year’s worth of low-skilled immigrants will cost American taxpayers a net $1.9 trillion (in constant 2012 dollars) over their lifetime.
What the data basically shows is that the majority of immigrants are a net drain on the welfare state. This means that citizens must pay higher taxes in order to support the over-burdened system, and those who already depended upon the system are hurt. Likewise, immigrants compete with Americans for jobs—particularly at the lower end of the employment spectrum, ie. black Americans.
You can have a welfare state, or open borders—never both. Most Americans, black, white, and Hispanic know this. It’s a shame our leaders don’t.