It’s time that we learn the real truth about illegal immigration in America.

In 2017, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) estimated the illegal immigrant population in the United States to be around 12.5 million.

FAIR now estimates the illegal numbers to be near 14.3 million at a cost of $131.9 billion annually to the American taxpayer.

But that may not be the real story.

While it didn’t make the national news last year, a study prepared jointly by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Yale University produced a shocking report.

Remember, these are two of the nation’s top liberal universities. Their studies of government data indicate there are as many as 22.1 million illegal aliens in the United States today.

Judicial Watch (JW), a conservative American activist group that investigates misconduct by government officials, recently released the updated report.

All of a sudden, the cost to the American taxpayer is even higher than reported by FAIR. Now the potential cost to the taxpayer is nearly $200 billion annually.

JW also found a report released last year by the Department of Homeland Security that reviewed the records of nearly 800,000 illegals who requested a special Obama-era amnesty for adults under the age of 31 that were brought to the United States by illegal friends and parents.

Nearly 100,000 of those identified in the report, who were granted amnesty under Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA,) have been arrested since arriving here and have criminal histories for crimes that include murder, rape, assaults and weapons charges.

There are estimates that there may be as many as two million criminal aliens in the United States today.

According to a report produced by FAIR, “Illegal aliens are incarcerated up to five and a half times as frequently as citizens and legal immigrants.”

Real-life statistics produced by the Government Accountability Office point out that one of every five federal prison inmates are criminal aliens with the largest majority being from Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Columbia and the Dominican Republic.

The report also showed that between 2011 and 2016, there were more than 730,000 criminal aliens in American jails and prisons.

During this same time period, reports indicate there were 4.9 million arrests for 7.5 million crimes committed by criminal aliens. The arrest numbers included more than one million for drug crimes, more than 660,000 for murder, sexual assaults and kidnappings, and another 1,500 for various terrorism related crimes.

Make no doubt about it. We have a public safety crisis here in the United States and Congress is doing very little to improve the quality of life for American citizens and those who come through the legal immigration process.

JW is clear in its finger pointing about the government’s failure to protect America, saying, “And, decades of failure by Democratic and Republican presidents and Congresses to enforce our immigration laws have undermined the rule of law in America.”

We see it today in the number of sanctuary cities around the country that are protecting illegal aliens by allowing them to remain comfortably within their jurisdictions.

Politicians on both sides have spent too much time listening to well-funded groups that want no borders and a “new world order.” The sole intent of those programs and desires is to destroy our culture and the United States as a constitutional government.

It’s time for Congress to (1) take action against the sanctuary cities that harbor illegal aliens, (2) build the wall, (3) enforce our immigration laws, and (4) deny illegal aliens billions of dollars in taxpayer benefits that may include Obamacare, free tuition, welfare, Social Security and free cell phones.

It’s time for the United States Congress to look after America!

Jimmy Terrell is retired from a career in law enforcement and is a Winder city councilman. He can be reached at ejterrell65@gmail.com.

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