Posted on April 23, 2015

Congress: Middle Class Incomes Drop as Immigration Surges

Paul Bedard, Washington Examiner, April 23, 2015

Wages of America’s middle class have dropped below 1970s levels as immigration has surged 325 percent, according to a new congressional report that questions claims that native Americans are economically helped by greater immigration.

The nonpartisan Congressional Research Service report studied immigration and middle class income from 1945-2013 and found that as immigration slowed between 1945 and 1970, American incomes increased.

But when immigration expanded, the incomes of the bottom 90 percent of Americans went flat and then dropped beginning in 2000.

In the report to the Senate Judiciary Committee, the CRS reported that the foreign-born population of the United States surged 324.5 percent, from 9,740,000 to 41,348,066, from 1970 to 2013.

And as that happened, incomes of the bottom 90 percent dropped 7.9 percent in 2013 dollars, from an average of $33,621 to $30,980.

The report could throw cold water on congressional efforts to expand immigration for tech and other jobs. One bill, sponsored by Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch and backed by presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio would boost guest worker levels and remove any cap on green cards for certain foreign graduates of American colleges and universities.