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A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

FactCheck Mailbag, Week of May 11-May 17

This week, readers sent us comments about immigration and … well, practically nothing else. Our story seemed to hit a nerve.

In the FactCheck Mailbag, we feature some of the e-mail we receive. Readers can send comments to editor@factcheck.org. Letters may be edited for length.

Immigration and Jobs: Not Convinced

Immigration’s effect on jobs can be debated ["Does Immigration Cost Jobs?" May 13]. What does not need debate (although most are not aware of this), is the undeniable fact that US population (and global population) is exceeding the limits within which we can comfortably live, short of genetically manipulating our foods, creating new toxic chemicals and questionable materials, "creating" water where it should not be, and continuing to crowd people on top of one another.

Immigration is a big part of overpopulation, but so is the domestic birth rate; both need to be addressed.

You mention in the article that immigrants "[expand] demand for goods and services that the foreign-born workers and their families consume, and thereby [create] jobs." So the idea that everyone seems to have is to produce more so GDP increases; produce more products and services, then more jobs are needed. More jobs are needed then more people are needed. If more people are needed, we must continually produce more … and so the cycle continues.

Rhett Zyla
Ketchum, Idaho


While I agree that immigrants largely do work that we would be unwilling to perform ourselves, there is a lot more than just jobs at stake. We who pay taxes and health care costs are burdened by the cost of educating, providing medical care at ERs, and many other services for which illegal immigrants still manage to qualify. No matter how you want to spin it, their presence here has more detrimental effect on our economy than the benefits their presence creates for us. I understand why they want to be here, but we only kid ourselves when we try to rationalize that it is anything other than a net negative to not control our borders.

Doug Utz
New Washington, Ohio


I believe you have finally crossed the line. You are using liberal means to promote a liberal agenda. Let’s review some REAL FACTS.

1. Individuals in this country illegally have committed a crime – FACT
2. Businesses or individuals that hire illegals commit a crime and should be punished according to the law as well as the illegals.
3. Businesses and individuals hiring illegals are not paying taxes, again a crime.
4. They do not create any LEGAL economic impact.
5. They usurp benefits and increase the cost of benefits normally afforded AMERICAN CITIZENS at the city, county, State and Federal level which has a negative economic impact on all.

I do not believe you have your FACTS together at all.

Michael Draut
Kimberling City, Mo.


FactCheck on the Tube? We’re Flattered.

I think it’s about time that one of the major networks or one of the cable news networks decided to have a factcheck segment on a daily basis. I truly believe that the citizens of the United States would relish a daily report clarifying what is being told to the American people by either political party. We are sick and tired of what has been happening in Washington, D.C. We can’t distinguish what is true and what is a lie. If it were not for FactCheck, we would have no way of knowing how much the public is being lied to.

I plan to send an email to MSNBC suggesting this idea. I think it’s high time that a network made the bold move towards calling politicians "On The Carpet." Our governing parties need to be held accountable for the misleading and outright lies that they tell the public.

Diane S. Riley
West Palm Beach, Fla.