An executive action from President Obama makes all kinds of legal, moral, and political sense — and it would have economic benefits as well. According to a new report from the Center for American Progress, an estimated $21.2 billion in additional payroll taxes would be collected over five years if Obama took executive action to protect some of the undocumented immigrants currently living in the country.
The increase in revenue is based on a scenario where 4.7 undocumented adults — those who are parents to undocumented children or US-born citizens — are recognized by Obama’s executive action and are allowed to get work permits. The result, the report says, would be that “many workers and employers will be able to emerge from the underground economy and pay payroll taxes for the first time.”
According to the report, executive action would increase the wages of the undocumented workers by 8.5% and better allow them to find jobs that match their skills and maximize their earnings. The report also found that if Obama went “bigger” with his executive action, and recognized 7.4 million people (those who have been in the US for at least 10 years), payroll tax revenues would increase by $33.4 billion over five years.