Granting Citizenship and Expanding the H1B Program Can Improve the Economy

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Economists across the United States are almost entirely unified in agreement that granting citizenship to undocumented immigrants will significantly improve the US economy within five years.  However, the longer we wait, the smaller the positive impact this will have.  The sooner undocumented immigrants are granted citizenship, the more the benefits to the US economy are maximized.  This is because these undocumented immigrants will make higher wages, pay higher taxes, and use their higher earnings to stimulate the US economy, and the sooner this ball gets rolling the better.

It is estimated that granting citizenship to undocumented immigrants will generate 1.4 trillion dollars in economic growth and 184 billion dollars in tax revenue.  Within five years of being granted citizenship, undocumented immigrants are estimated to see a 25.1% rise in their annual incomes.  This extra money will ripple through the US economy.  This is because not only is more money going into the pockets of these workers, but also with citizenship they can spend this money freely without concern of it being traced back to its illegal origins.  They can purchase a wider variety of products in the United States, and with their higher incomes, they can purchase more of it.  Not to mention, their incomes could be taxed, and at higher rates than they would have been with 25.1% less annual income.

While granting citizenship to undocumented immigrants will absolutely benefit the US economy in a short amount of time, economists warn that this change ALONE is not enough to create a massive resurgence in the US economy.  However, immigration is the answer in the form of granting citizenship to undocumented immigrants as well as expanding programs that bring highly skilled workers to the United States to work under H1-B visa status for high salaries for the growing STEM industries.  STEM industries are expanding faster than the US workforce can fill the jobs that require highly adept math, science, and engineering skills.  These are the big money industries that the US needs to stay competitive in the international marketplace as well as stimulate economic growth in a struggling economy.

About the Author

Sheila Danzig

Sheila Danzig is the Executive Director of CCI,, a foreign credentials evaluation agency.  For a no-charge analysis of any difficult case, RFE, Denial, or NOID, please go to or call 800.771.4723.

This article was written by Rebecca Little