Great catch by Mark Krikorian today exposing some number fudging by the open borders crowd. Krikorian links to a post by Harvard Kennedy School George Borjas explaining his new paper examining claims by pro-amnesty advocates that immigration actually raises the wages of many native-born workers. Borjas summarizes his paper’s findings:
The [pro-amnesty study] data includes currently enrolled high school juniors and seniors. They classify these high school juniors and seniors as part of the “high school dropout” workforce. Their finding of immigrant-native complementarity disappears if the analysis excludes these high school juniors and seniors.
Krikorian adds: “Moral of the story: If new research supports your preferred policy positions by overturning everything else known about the subject, see if someone else can reproduce the results first.” As Heritage’s Robert Rector has shown, post-1960 immigration policies that permitted and encouraged the entry and residence of millions of low-skill immigrants into the nation has only added to America’s poverty problem:
Prior to 1960, immigrants to the U.S. had education levels that were similar to those of the non-immigrant workforce and earned wages that were, on average, higher than those of non-immigrant workers. Since the mid-1960s, however, the education levels of new immigrants have plunged relative to non-immigrants; consequently, the average wages of immigrants are now well below those of the non-immigrant population. Recent immigrants increasingly occupy the low end of the U.S. socio-economic spectrum.