The Consequences of Legalization Versus Mass Deportation in New Mexico

Raúl Hinojosa-Ojeda
Date of Publication: 
August, 2012
Source Organization: 

The Consequences of Legalization Versus Mass Deportation in Florida describes the direct impacts of either deporting or legalizing undocumented workers in the state of Florida. The state has one of the largest populations of unauthorized immigrants, and it has played and will continue to play a pivotal role in elections as a swing state.  

Debates about the economic and fiscal benefits and drawbacks of immigrants tend to oversimplify the role that immigrants play. Immigrants are workers, consumers and taxpayers. The effects of their labor and consumption on economic growth and fiscal health must be factored in when considering how to address the situation of a large undocumented workforce.  

The undocumented population of Florida numbers around 825,000 (4.5 percent) but makes up 5.6 percent of the workforce. They generate $5.67 billion of gross state product and $31.22 billion in tax revenue. According to the report, if 100 percent deporation occurs, a $15.45 billion loss in wages, $5.67 billion loss in tax revenue and $31.22 billion loss in gross state revenue will result. 

In reality, the effects of mass deportation or legalization would be much larger than the report reveals. Mass deportation, for example, would result in an indirect negative impact on local businesses because there would be less money circulating in the local economy, which would lead to further job losses. The estimates reported in this report should thus be considered conservative rather than exhaustive.  

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Hinojosa-Ojeda, R. (2012). The Consequences of Legalization Versus Mass Deportation in New Mexico. Washington, D.C.: Center for American Progress. Retrieved from