Mitt Romney wants to oust undocumented immigrants, but a recent op-ed in The Huffington Post shows that doing so could have negative consequences as undocumented immigrants paid more taxes than Romney did in 2010.
Contrary to popular belief, undocumented immigrants must pay taxes through the individual taxpayer identification numbers (ITIN) and employer identification numbers (EIN) in order to work safely in the U.S.
ITIN gives undocumented immigrants an IRS identification number without an SSN to pay taxes. The premise is that no other government agency has access to the information unless they need it for criminal or tax investigation purposes.
EIN provides undocumented workers with an IRS version of an SSN for business bank accounts and tax payments with just a mailing address. In this way, undocumented immigrants pay more to social services than they receive from these services. They pay $6 billion to $7 billion in social security and $72 billion to Medicare and unemployment insurance. But they cannot receive any social security, Medicare, or unemployment benefits unless they become legal.
By paying more taxes on social security, Medicare, and unemployment insurance and not receiving any benefits, undocumented immigrants end up supporting part of America’s social welfare system. Receiving more than they pay to undocumented immigrants, social services end up increasing their net worth through the taxes of undocumented immigrants; whereas, wealthy Americans such as Romney decrease the net worth of social services.
Wealthy Americans such as Romney pay less into these services than they use. Due to loopholes in the tax system, Romney only paid $3 million in taxes on $21.6 million in 2010 – much less than required. Not having to pay the required funds, but still receiving benefits leaves a negative balance. Romney’s $3 million in taxes are unlikely to cover his social security and Medicare costs because he paid below his tax requirements.
Likewise, in 2005, it was estimated that wealthy Americans would have contributed $490 billion to $750 billion had their taxes had no loopholes; possible funds that could have gone to social services were lost. This implication shows how debt loopholes for the wealthy are a detriment to social security, Medicare, and unemployment.
By creating debt for social services instead of increasing the net worth of social security, Medicare, and unemployment, wealthy Americans harm the American social system. Conversely, undocumented immigrants are the ones that support American social services. They increase the net worth of the system by only funding these services and not using the money they put in. In the end, by funding some of our social programs, undocumented immigrants contribute to the well-being of the nation. Instead of trying to get rid of our undocumented immigrants, Americans should allow them to stay in our country.