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    8 Myths & Facts About Immigration and the Upcoming Election

    Immigration has been a central issue in the upcoming election. Needlessly acrimonious, the immigration issue continues to divide members of both major political parties in the United States. The divisions in the Republican party have become increasingly well-known, thanks to their outspoken and extreme candidate for President of the United States. Targeting Mexicans and Muslims in particular, those against immigration have threatened “solutions” that would result in mass deportation and keeping visitors out of the country. It doesn’t help that United States Immigration law is complex and even confusing, making it hard for citizens, lawmakers, and elected officials to understand. Put simply, immigration to the U.S. is based on reuniting families, protecting refugees, promoting diversity, and admitting individuals with skills of value to the economy. Unfortunately, those on all sides of this debate are guilty of trading in rhetoric and myths regarding how immigration could affect the the fabric of the country. Here are eight myths and facts about immigration and the upcoming election.


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    8 Active Myths | Suggest a Myth
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    FACT: Deportation would hurt the United States Economy, both long-term and short-term.

    According to a recent study by the Center for Global Trade Analysis at Purdue University, mass deportation of unauthorized immigrants would result in significant losses to the economy, especially in terms of Gross Domestic Product.

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    MYTH: Undocumented immigrants are stealing jobs and taking over America.

    While undocumented immigration peaked at 12 million in 2007 and has gone down to 11.1 million, this population only makes up about five percent of the workforce in the United States, according to the Pew Research Center.

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    FACT: The border will never be 100% secure.

    One of the favorite phrases used by those in the Republican party is to secure the border. While policies such as a wall or fence and increase in Border Patrol have been proposed, it is unlikely that there is an objective standard for a secure border.

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    MYTH: Legalization of undocumented immigrants would negatively effect the U.S. economy.

    The Center for Global Trade Analysis at Purdue University recently completed a study examining the effects of immigration changes on the U.S. economy and found that legalization resulted in an increase in America’s Gross Domestic Product, strengthening the economy.

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    FACT: The majority of American voters support allowing undocumented immigrants to stay.

    The Associated Press, CBS News, and even Fox News have polled and reported that most Americans believe that unauthorized working immigrants should be allowed to stay and that support the creation of a path to citizenship.

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    MYTH: Undocumented immigrants are pouring over the border into the United States.

    In fact, the Pew Research Center has examined population data and discover that most unauthorized immigrants arrived in the U.S. before 2005. More than 85% of undocumented immigrants have lived in the U.S. for ten years or more, and up to two million of this population were brought into the country as children.

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    FACT: Mass deportations would break up families and negatively impact children’s long-term development.

    A common situation for undocumented immigrants is that they enter the United States illegally and then have children while living in this country. The kids born in the United States are citizens under the Constitution. As much as 49% of unauthorized adult immigrants are in families with children under the age of 18; if parents were deported, children would be put in foster care.

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    MYTH: Mass deportation would not cost a lot of money.

    In addition to hurting the U.S. economy, the Center for American Progress found that deporting unauthorized immigrants would cost $285 billion over five years. This includes enforcement in the country and along its borders.

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