Terry Jeffrey

"In addition, at least 55 percent of the population from Asia had at least a bachelor's degree, as did 51 percent of the people from Europe and Canada," said CBO. "Just 33 percent of the native-born population had earned at least a bachelor's degree."

In keeping with their general level of educational attainment, Mexican and Central American immigrants earned less than native-born Americans, while Asians, Europeans and Canadians earn more.

"The amount of earnings among foreign-born workers also varied greatly by their country of origin," CBO reported. "For example, in 2011, the median annual earnings of male workers from Mexico and Central America was $24,000 -- whereas among male workers from Asia, the median was $50,000; among their counterparts from Europe and Canada, it was $55,000; and among native-born male workers, $46,000."

"Among female workers from Mexico and Central America," said CBO, "median annual earnings were $17,000 -- whereas among their counterparts from Asia; the median was $30,000; among those from Europe and Canada, it was $35,000; and among native-born female workers, $32,000."

This is not to say that an immigrant cannot come to the United States without a high school education -- whether from Mexico or elsewhere -- and make a success here. Certainly, someone can do that. Nor is this to say that the United States should not welcome legal immigrants from Mexico and Central America. It certainly should.

The real issue here is the government's persistent refusal to enforce the law in deference to three special interests.

What are they? First, American industries that have been hiring less skilled, less educated illegal workers from Mexico and Central America -- and thus have made less-educated, less-skilled American workers compete with immigration lawbreakers for jobs and wages.

Secondly, the illegal aliens themselves, who have been allowed persistent flout U.S. laws.

Finally, and most significantly, there are the politicians who believe their own interests are advanced by pandering both to the industries that employ illegal aliens and to the illegal aliens themselves.

Terry Jeffrey

Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor-in-chief of CNSNews

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