Fact Check: Trumps’ immigration plan is based on falsehoods

Fact Check: Trumps’ immigration plan is based on falsehoods

The billionaire frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination may be apt at stirring up voter resentment yet when it comes to getting the facts straight he is found wanting.

Heavy scrutiny has been placed on the immigration reform plan released by Donald Trump on his website. The billionaire frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination may be apt at stirring up voter resentment yet when it comes to getting the facts straight he is found wanting.

The paper released by Trump on Sunday is nearly 2,000 words long. In response, FactCheck.Org has released an equally long analysis of the many factual errors that can be found in the plan.

Trump claims that birthright citizenship (a legal standard found in many countries which says that anyone born in this country is a citizen of this country regardless of parental origins) “remains the biggest magnet for illegal immigration”. However, it is jobs and economic opportunity that truly lures desperate families to come to America.

“If you read a few hundred academic articles, I don’t think you’ll find one that identifies the desire to have children in the U.S. … as a significant factor in people’s thinking,” said Marc Rosenblum, deputy director of the U.S. Immigration Policy Program at the Migration Policy Institute.

Trump makes the claim “U.S. taxpayers have been asked to pick up hundreds of billions in healthcare costs, housing costs, education costs, welfare costs, etc.” However, a report by the Congressional Budget Office says the actual figure is much more modest. For instance, New Jersey only pays about $14.7 billion a year for immigrant households. California just $20 billion.

Trump sites a report from the Government Accountability Office, claiming it supports his notion that three million illegal immigrants are arrested each year. This is not what the report says. The actual number is 1.7 million.

“Based on our random sample of 1,000 criminal aliens, we estimate that our study population of about 249,000 criminal aliens were arrested about 1.7 million times, averaging about 7 arrests per criminal alien, slightly lower than the 8 arrests per criminal alien we reported in 2005,” said report. Even this number only includes arrests- not prosecutions or convictions.

The three million Trump cited is actually 2.9 million and it refers to the total number of criminal offenses committed by the sample population. “About a third of those alleged offenses were immigration offenses (529,859) and traffic violations (404,788),” according to FactCheck.Org.

In short, Donald Trump calls for a complete overhaul of the US immigration system, intending to replace it with a plan that is based on falsities and fear mongering.

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