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Los Angeles Valley College

Political Science 001 - American Government

Spring 2007 - Revised May 2007


The Center for Immigration Studies estimates that annual welfare, medical and education costs to California total another $3B per year. The total cost to the United States is estimated to be more than $11 B per year.

Indirect Costs: According to a 2005 Center of Immigration Studies' report illegal immigrants currently represent one of every four immigrants. They are significantly less well educated than their legal immigrant counterparts, make far greater demands on the welfare system and have a much higher percentage of families living below the poverty line. They also have a far greater number of uninsured family members. Put into context, their undereducated status makes it far more difficult for the illegal immigrants and their families to pull themselves out of poverty.


The benefits of legal immigration: Over one million immigrants enter the United States legally each year through national quotas, visa lottery and family reunification systems. Despite often maddening delays, personal inconvenience and bureaucratic hurtles it is believed the legal system of immigration offers positive results for our Country. Those selected for legal immigration are deemed well qualified to become productive members of American Society.  Applicants must:


Have a renewable work or student visa that requires extensive background investigations by US and home country security agencies


Speak and have a verifiable working knowledge of English


Have the equivalent of a high school diploma


Be ‘of good character’ [that is no criminal record or trouble with the law]


Have knowledge of the US Constitution and how the government works.

Our immigration process offers us a steady stream of 'would-be US citizens' who have the capability of becoming useful and productive members of society. After initial entry they are mentored and checked regularly by US security officials. The need to follow a clear path to citizenship is a strong incentive to be law abiding.

E. The security problems of illegal immigrants: The fact that millions of persons are entering the United States each year without documentation or minimal checks into their character and background is a significant security problem. Law enforcement and Homeland Security officials are forced to deal with a shadow illegal community. Its members are unknown, practically untraceable and to avoid apprehension must remain on the fringes of society. They must procure false documentation, do not have to speak English or have even minimal levels of education. This hidden society poses significant security problems, in that:


Hundred of thousands of people arriving in our country each year are unknown as to character, criminal record, qualifications or intentions. There is no

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