Move Over Chicken Little. Maine’s Business Leaders Have Got You Beat

The headline of a Bangor Daily News op-ed reads, “Maine needs immigrants to avert an economic crisis.” The opinion piece penned by the executive director of the Maine Business Immigration Coalition is a passionate plea for Congress to declare amnesty for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals beneficiaries before the Supreme Court rules on whether President Trump has the constitutional authority to do away with a policy implemented by his predecessor.

“Every year, DACA recipients contribute nearly $4 million to Maine’s GDP,” notes Beth Stickney. Let’s take her word for that. But even in a small state like Maine, the loss of $4 million hardly seems to rise to the level of “an economic crisis.” Turns out, even if every DACA recipient in Maine were to suddenly disappear, the impact would fall far short of a glitch, much less a crisis.

According to state data, Maine’s 2018 GDP was just shy of $65 billion, pegging the potential financial hit that might occur if DACA is ended at less than 1/100th of 1 percent. There is a reasonable degree of subjectivity in determining what actually constitutes a crisis, economic or otherwise. But, really, 1/100th of 1 percent?

Potential economic harm is one of the key arguments used by illegal alien advocates in the current Supreme Court case seeking to keep the president from repealing DACA. Obviously, they thought this was one of their strongest arguments for keeping the program in place. They ought to hope that none of the nine justices on the Supreme Court are regular readers of the Bangor Daily News.

About Author


Ira joined the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in 1986 with experience as a journalist, professor of journalism, special assistant to Gov. Richard Lamm (Colorado), and press secretary of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. His columns have appeared in National Review, LA Times, NY Times, Washington Post, Newsweek, and more. He is an experienced TV and radio commentator.

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