In July of 2010, (with an ensuing revision in February of 2011) FAIR’s Research department released a detailed report that closely examined the fiscal burden imposed by illegal aliens on all U.S. taxpayers. The result of the analysis was that illegal immigration costs the U.S. well over $100 billion per year, a staggering amount even if we weren’t facing a recession and crippling debt. This burden can be reduced over time as illegal aliens are sent home or leave on their own.

The report has been around for some months now, but during recent GOP presidential debates its result has been used as a major talking point to emphasize the size of this problem and that action is needed now. During the GOP debate on September 18, Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-Minn.), in response to a question about immigration, talked about the great burden illegal immigration imposes on the United States, while citing FAIR’s cost data.

We can’t continue to sweep this issue under the rug. These costs will continue to grow as more people cross our borders illegally. $113 billion is a lot of money that could be put to better use in solving other problems, helping stimulate our economy, and encouraging more fiscally responsible government. I am glad that candidates and civic leaders are finally paying attention and proposing solutions to this problem.