This week the President sent a clear signal that immigration reform is still in the queue for his first year in office. Meeting with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, he did not waver in his commitment to fixing our broken immigration system. In the context of a weakened economy, immigration reform would actually have a positive impact in contrast to the costly enforcement-only policies of the last administration.

This week, the Immigration Policy Center released a synthesis of economic data showing the economic benefits of immigration reform. Some of the data is produced by our government’s own Congressional Budget Office, which has declared the benefits of putting workers on a path to legalization.

For example, had the 2006 immigration reform bill passed, $66 billion in new revenue would have been produced over ten years from income and payroll taxes, as well as administrative fees, which would have more than offset any new spending on public-benefit programs.

It’s actually quite simple: immigration reform would trigger a virtuous cycle leading from one good thing to the next, and enforcement-only policies currently serve as a vicious cycle that costs more and more as time goes on.

Immigration Reform, Economically Speaking, is a Virtuous Cycle:

Enforcement-Only Policies, With No Path to Citizenship, Are a Vicious Cycle:

President Obama and his team have realized that immigration reform not only makes sense politically and morally, but it is absolutely imperative economically.