According to an article on CNN.com: “It would cost at least $94 billion to find, detain and remove all 12 million people believed to be staying illegally in the United States, the federal government estimated Wednesday.” (Emphasis added)
Roughly $10,000 per undocumented alien (assuming 10 million undocumented aliens)? Seems like a lot of money. If this figure doesn’t include court costs and other expenses as ICE claims it does not, it would be a lot more than that. Also, considering some estimates put the number of undocumented in the US at 20 million, maybe ICE’s estimate should be even higher.
Perhaps Congress should revisit CIR and have ICE concentrate on removing those undocumented who have been convicted of serious crimes and let the others pay fines, be voluntarily photographed, fingerprinted and accounted for in the system. This week being the anniversary of 9-11, it would make sense for Congress to do something that was at once cost-effective and sensible from a national security point of view. However, you and I know that nothing substantial will happen until after the 2008 elections. Hopefully there will be a batch of new Congresspeople with common sense who will do the right thing. If not, it will be more of the same.