Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
November 14, 2006
POLITICS: Abortion and Illegal Immigration
"We hear a lot of arguments today that the reason that we can't get serious about our borders is that we are desperate for all these workers," [the panel's chairman] said. "You don't have to think too long. If you kill 44 million of your potential workers, it's not too surprising we would be desperate for workers."
What's interesting is that the Washington Post article presents this argument as something of a curiosity, but is unable to identify any possible counterargument, relying on Missouri Democrats who called the report "ridiculous and embarrassing" and "a little delusional".
Now, you could argue - not persuasively, I would add - that illegal immigration is not caused primarily by the available supply of cheap labor and demand in a labor market that wants more of it. Or you could argue, somewhat more persuasively, that the real driver is the demand for illegal labor, i.e., a labor black market in workers who will underbid the minimum wage and other expensive labor laws, in which case more American workers would not matter that much. Or you could affirmatively argue, albeit rather cold-bloodedly, that keeping the population of workers down through abortions is good because it drives up wages. But it seems hard to argue with the more general observation that the nation has fewer workers available as a result of 47 million abortions.