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The Spillover Effect of State Immigration Policies

A RAND Corporation report finds that laws targeting undocumented immigrants affect everyone.
Protest against Arizona's harsh immigration laws.
Protest against Arizona's harsh immigration laws.AP Photo/Matt York

U.S. federal immigration law has not kept pace with the swiftly changing needs of the country and its immigrants. Since 2000, several attempts at comprehensive reform have fizzled out, leaving the door open for states to legislate—particularly on the issue of illegal immigration. But while these state laws are meant to restrict or expand rights for the undocumented population, they can end up affecting others, too, according to a new report by the RAND Corporation, a policy think tank.

Here’s Lynn A. Karoly, a senior economist at RAND, via a press release: