Marisol Soto wants you to quite literally see how immigrants are pumping billions of dollars into our nation’s economy every year.
The undocumented nursing student was already incensed after Donald Trump’s racist claims about Mexicans during this Presidential campaign launch in June. But the final straw came from she read about a teacher making “a negative comment about immigrants and agree with Donald Trump.”
So, Marisol launched an online campaign to highlight the massive financial contributions immigrants make to our cities, states, and nation. And as part of the campaign, Marisol is asking people to write the hashtag #undocumoney on paper money in red ink and to post a photo on social media.
According to NBC News, thousands on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter have so far responded to her call:
— Carlos A. Batara (@CarlosBatara) September 5, 2015
According to a study by the Institute for Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP), undocumented immigrants paid an enormous $11.2 billion in state and local taxes in 2012. In Texas alone, undocumented immigrants paid $1.6 billion in taxes to the state.
Immigrants — both undocumented and otherwise — keep vital programs like Social Security funded, too. According to the Social Security Administration, “undocumented immigrants paid $13 billion in payroll taxes into the Social Security Trust fund in 2010 alone.”
And, immigrants are set to contribute $500 billion more of their hard-earned money into the fund over the next 20 years.
If Congressional Republicans would just allow a comprehensive immigration reform bill to get to the President’s desk for his signature, nationwide state and local tax contributions from immigrants would also increase by $2.2 billion annually.
“We want everyone to be able to see yes, this is American money won in America, but it was earned by an undocumented person,” said Marisol. “And you do not have to be undocumented to participate. We just want to create awareness.”
The campaign’s Facebook page has already earned thousands of likes. A video from the campaign — which features Marisol and other immigration leaders like Cesar Vargas — has nearly 10,000 views on YouTube: