Op-ed: It’s Time for an Immigration Moratorium

By Jason Richwine on March 26, 2024

When President Biden took office, the foreign-born population in the United States stood at 45 million. By the end of 2023, that number had risen to a record 50.4 million. For years, as the absolute number of immigrants living in the U.S. hit all-time highs, advocates insisted that at least the foreign-born proportion of the country’s population was not unprecedented. Now it is. The figure of 15.2 percent foreign-born recorded in December eclipses the previous records set in 1890 and 1910. No longer can anyone say, “We’ve been here before.” In fact, with no changes to present policy, the Census Bureau projects that every year will now be a record year for the immigrant share of the population.

For immigration restrictionists, even just restoring some basic controls over the Southern border would be an improvement over the status quo. However, it’s useful to consider what the opposite of today’s policy would look like. Instead of record-breaking immigration, what would be the consequences of historically low immigration? While no one argues that it would usher in utopia, restriction could bring many cultural, political, and economic benefits at a modest cost.

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[Read the rest at tomklingenstein.com.]