UPDATED: Read the new Heritage report
Heritage Foundation President Jim DeMint appeared on ABC News’ “This Week” on Sunday to unveil the first details of Heritage’s forthcoming report on the cost of amnesty.
DeMint told host George Stephanopoulos:
Our country faces very difficult economic and financial problems, but [President Obama] seems content to bring up emotional, divisive issues – whether it be guns or immigration – and start the fight and play the referee. …
The study you’ll see from Heritage this week presents a staggering cost of another amnesty in our country and the detrimental effects long-term that will have. There’s no reason we can’t begin to fix our immigration system so that we won’t make the problem worse.
But the bill that’s being presented is unfair to those who came here legally, it will cost Americans trillions of dollars, it will our unlawful immigration system worse. …
Heritage is the only organization that has done an analysis of the cost. Unlawful immigrants make up about 2 percent of our GDP, and they consume most of that. If you consider all the factors of amnesty and unlawful immigration, the cost will be in the trillions of dollars over the lifetime of these unlawful immigrants.
When asked about immigration reform’s prospects in Congress, DeMint drew a comparison to Obamacare:
I think if people read the bill, that it will be blocked. Because once you get into it, just like Obamacare, it is not the way it’s been advertised.
DeMint joined the show’s powerhouse roundtable to discuss and debate the week’s top news. The panel included political odd couple James Carville and Mary Matalin, former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson, and ABC News’ Cokie Roberts. In addition to immigration, the panel talked about gun control and 2016.
For more on the show, follow the hashtag #ThisWeek on Twitter to track what others were saying about the show.