New Study Shows Fiscal Impact of Refugees on U.S. Taxpayers Can Reach Into Six Figures...Each

Nick Kangadis | March 10, 2020
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The U.S. is a charitable country, because its people are seemingly the most generous in the world. In fact, according to the Charities Aid Foundation’s (CAF) World Giving Index, the U.S. is the most generous country on the planet. That being said, as good as it feels to help those in need, there’s a limit to generosity that turns into a feeling of being taken advantage of that bothers some.

The Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) recently released a study that reports the average refugee costs the American taxpayer between $60,000 and $133,000 — each — over the entirety of their stay in the U.S. CIS calls this their “lifetime fiscal cost.”

"Our best estimate of the average refugee’s lifetime fiscal cost, expressed as a net present value, is $60,000, with those entering as adults (ages 25 to 64) costing $133,000 each. Perhaps this is a price that the United States should be willing to pay to further its humanitarian goals," the study reported. "However, resettlement in the United States may not be the most cost-effective means of aiding displaced people."

The CIS study also put the education level of refugees as an important factor into determining the cost to taxpayers of today's average refugee.

According to the study:

Although refugees from earlier gen- erations were often well educated, today’s refugees have fewer than nine years of schooling on average. Because of their low earning power and immediate access to welfare benefits, recent refugees cost the government substan- tially more than they contribute in taxes, even over the long term[…]

Why is education relevant? Because under the U.S. government’s progressive taxation and spending structure, high-earning Americans tend to receive less in public benefits than they pay in taxes, while lower-earners receive benefits that exceed the taxes they contribute. Given their low education levels, today’s refugees are unlikely to possess the earning power necessary to become net fiscal contributors. This is not a reflection of their character; it is simply a reality of economic life in the United States. In fact, common sense tells us that the public sector would not be struggling every year with budget deficits if even its least-educated citizens were somehow paying their own way.

Americans in general understand that some people legitimately need help escaping untenable situations in their home countries. However, in order to keep the U.S. economy in a relative state of solvency, there needs to be a limit on how many people we let in.

The U.S. should learn a lesson from the perceivably failed experiment that the European Union (EU) perpetrated on its member countries on the European continent.

While human nature gives us enough empathy to want to help as many people as possible, you simply can’t help everyone. Why? Because human nature also gives us the characteristic of self-preservation. Absolutely be charitable, but don’t do so at your own peril.

H/T: The Blaze