The Economist (2/15/20) ran a brief article last year with a startling headline: “Immigration to America Is Down. Wages Are Up. Are the Two Related?” Maybe, the article’s anonymous author answered, at least for the short term.
A few on the right were quick to cite this conclusion as support for former President Trump’s efforts to deter immigration. “Amazing how that works,” Donald Trump, Jr., tweeted. “Thanks @realDonaldTrump.” Breitbart’s Neil Munro (2/19/20) used the article to claim that immigration restrictions were “driving up blue-collar wages, and those extra wages are stabilizing the US economy.”
The Economist article didn’t get much public attention beyond these references. But we can expect more claims of the sort as conservative politicians and media react to Biden administration moves to address wage disparity and to reverse some of Trump’s xenophobic policies. A preview came on February 16, when Utah Sen. Mitt Romney tweeted that he and a fellow Republican, Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton, were introducing legislation to raise the federal minimum wage—but only in exchange for further restrictions on undocumented immigrants seeking jobs.
Read more at FAIR.