Should the Government Allow Immigrants Who Are Here Illegally to Become US Citizens?

With over 11 million immigrants in the United States illegally, the issue of illegal immigration continues to divide Americans.

Some people say that illegal immigration benefits the US economy through additional tax revenue, expansion of the low-cost labor pool, and increased money in circulation. They contend that immigrants bring good values, have motivations consistent with the American dream, perform jobs that Americans won’t take, and that opposition to immigration stems from racism.

Opponents of illegal immigration say that people who break the law by crossing the US border without proper documentation or by overstaying their visas should be deported and not rewarded with a path to citizenship and access to social services. They argue that people in the country illegally are criminals and social and economic burdens to law-abiding, tax-paying Americans.


Immigration ProCon.org is a nonpartisan, nonprofit website that presents research, studies, and pro and con statements on questions related to illegal immigration in the United States. We use "illegal immigration" to refer to the act of immigrating illegally. We refer to people who have entered the United States without proper legal documentation and who are deportable if apprehended, and people who have entered the United States legally but who have fallen "out of status" and are also deportable as "people who are in the United States illegally," "people who have immigrated illegally," or "people in the country illegally." Read more about the terminology here.


PROS & CONS BY CATEGORY
CORE QUESTION

Definitions

Immigration Quotas

Economic Impact

Immigrants' Rights and Access to Services

Labor Market - American Workers and Employers

Deportation Debate

Borders

Federal Immigration Law Enforcement

State and Local Law Enforcement

Crime

Terrorism

National Identification Card






Notices for Illegal Immigration and Other ProCon.org Information (archived after 30 days)
Does Illegal Immigration Relate to Higher Crime Incidence?
1/31/2017 - Delve into this debate with quotes from National Executive Committee Member of the Constitution Party Peter B. Gemma (Pro), Rupert Murdoch (Con), Foxnews.com Investigative Reporter Malia Zimmerman (Pro), Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute Jason L. Riley (Con), journalist and FBI informant, Brandon Darby (Pro), and Co-Director of the Center for Immigration Studies (Con), among others.

Are Mass Deportations a Good Method to Address Illegal Immigration?
1/31/2017 - Delve into this issue with quotes from former US Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh C. Johnson (pro), the American College of Physicians (con), Rush Limbaugh (pro), the USA Today editorial board (con), the Bloomberg View editorial board (pro), and US Senator Bernie Sanders (con), among others.

President Trump Signs Immigration Executive Orders
1/30/2017 - On Jan. 25, 2017 Trump signed two executive orders, one to increase border patrol forces and the other to begin plans to build the US-Mexico border wall. On Jan. 27, 2017 he signed an order that suspended the entry of people from seven predominantly Muslim countries and all refugees.

Archived Notices

Last updated on 2/16/2017 9:10:29 AM PST

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With over 11 million immigrants in the United States illegally, the issue of illegal immigration continues to divide Americans.

Some people say that illegal immigration benefits the US economy through additional tax revenue, expansion of the low-cost labor pool, and increased money in circulation. They contend that immigrants bring good values, have motivations consistent with the American dream, perform jobs that Americans won’t take, and that opposition to immigration stems from racism.

Opponents of illegal immigration say that people who break the law by crossing the US border without proper documentation or by overstaying their visas should be deported and not rewarded with a path to citizenship and access to social services. They argue that people in the country illegally are criminals and social and economic burdens to law-abiding, tax-paying Americans.

Immigration ProCon.org is a nonpartisan, nonprofit website that presents research, studies, and pro and con statements on questions related to illegal immigration in the United States. We use "illegal immigration" to refer to the act of immigrating illegally. We refer to people who have entered the United States without proper legal documentation and who are deportable if apprehended, and people who have entered the United States legally but who have fallen "out of status" and are also deportable as "people who are in the United States illegally," "people who have immigrated illegally," or "people in the country illegally." Read more about the terminology here.


PROS & CONS BY CATEGORY
CORE QUESTION

Definitions

Immigration Quotas

Economic Impact

Immigrants' Rights and Access to Services

Labor Market - American Workers and Employers

Deportation Debate

Borders

Federal Immigration Law Enforcement

State and Local Law Enforcement

Crime

Terrorism

National Identification Card

States that Allow Driver Licenses for Undocumented Immigrants

Is Illegal Immigration an Economic Burden to America?

Demographics of Immigrants in the United States Illegally










Notices for Illegal Immigration and Other ProCon.org Information (archived after 30 days)
Does Illegal Immigration Relate to Higher Crime Incidence?
1/31/2017 - Delve into this debate with quotes from National Executive Committee Member of the Constitution Party Peter B. Gemma (Pro), Rupert Murdoch (Con), Foxnews.com Investigative Reporter Malia Zimmerman (Pro), Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute Jason L. Riley (Con), journalist and FBI informant, Brandon Darby (Pro), and Co-Director of the Center for Immigration Studies (Con), among others.

Are Mass Deportations a Good Method to Address Illegal Immigration?
1/31/2017 - Delve into this issue with quotes from former US Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh C. Johnson (pro), the American College of Physicians (con), Rush Limbaugh (pro), the USA Today editorial board (con), the Bloomberg View editorial board (pro), and US Senator Bernie Sanders (con), among others.

President Trump Signs Immigration Executive Orders
1/30/2017 - On Jan. 25, 2017 Trump signed two executive orders, one to increase border patrol forces and the other to begin plans to build the US-Mexico border wall. On Jan. 27, 2017 he signed an order that suspended the entry of people from seven predominantly Muslim countries and all refugees.

Archived Notices

Last updated on 2/16/2017 9:10:29 AM PST