Influences of Economic and Political Power Essay


The following paper discusses how economic and political power influences immigration and policy decisions. Immigration is a strongly debated topic that is difficult to simplify as it multi-faceted and provokes strong emotional positions. The research focuses on the impact of Mexican immigration into the United States because of the magnitude and growth of Mexican immigration compared to any other countries. Over the past five decades, the single largest origin group of Latin American immigrants in the United States has been from Mexico (Stoney & Batalova 2013). This alone fact separates the topic of Mexican immigration into its own categories of cultural, social, and economic impacts. The purpose of this study was to explore the impact of Mexican immigration on political power and influence amidst the debate of how the United States grapples with the past, present, and future of how to manage through the negative implications and unintended consequences of key immigration policy decisions.

The research points to policies that break apart generational families and target historically common jobs that employ illegal immigrants. Additionally, this research draws from political arguments of self-interest versus ideological and cultural explanations and the detriments associated to self interest.The material referenced and cited provides scholarly examples and findings that underscore the importance of keeping Mexican immigration an openly discussed topic so it can gain more attention from policy makers and political agendas. The details and primary ideas in this research suggest that cost and benefits of immigration is the centerpiece to the real concerns between Mexico and the United States. The research concludes that the continued immigration growth, social status, and economic impact present a unique set of challenges that aren’t easily solved.


The immigration debate makes headline news and is a focal point of political strategy decisions across the country; even at the highest levels of the U.S. Government. Observers and participants of the immigration debate investigate the crucial crossroads related to Mexican immigration such as recent growth trends that translate into tangible context for primary political positioning and ideas. The number of Mexican immigrants living in the United States rose rapidly from 1960 to 2000—nearly tripling during the 1970s and doubling during both the 1980s and 1990s (Stoney & Batalova 2013). By comparison, Mexican immigrants more than double any other ethnic group immigrating into the United States and were less likely to enter as refugees and more likely to become lawful permanent residents. Researchers point out that Mexican immigrants are more likely to enter the U.S. without authorization and repordelty having lower levels of English proficiency and education but were more likely to be of working age (Stoney & Batalova 2013).

The statistical studies create questions about the opportunity for immigration policy reform because the conflicts of willing illegal workers consuming jobs that are low wage paying; blocking a legal workforce from contributing to the economy in a meaningful way. The research makes it clear that the economy is directly impacted by the characteristics of Mexican immigrants residing in the United States through growing population, geographic distribution, and socioeconomic status. What laws can be made to mitigate the negative impacts? How can the government work with the employers of illegal immigrants to deploy a progressive plan to help their workers become lawful citizens? These thought starters help to illustrate the crucial crossroads that the influence of political power and policy decisions have on the economy.

Literature Review

Political Power

Castles and Ammendola discuss how migration plays a major role in influencing the political power across all platforms made available. The primary aim the authors take is to help the reader understand the macro and micro views of migration and immigration. This is to establish the root causes such capital, better technology, and human rights opportunity (Castles and Ammendola, 2005). In respect to Mexican immigration, the opportunities to make more money in the United States proves to be the primary reason for illegal immigrants to take great risks in search of a better life. Immigration policy decisions contribute to strong economic and political ramifications that influence how Mexican immigrants are viewed and treated. The use of technology is determined by the industry and cost benefits comparison to low wage manual labor; making human rights even more important to the political power influence on policies that oversee labor laws, etc.

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Nowhere is the contribution of immigrants more apparent than in the high-technology and other knowledge-based sectors. Silicon Valley and other high-tech sectors would cease to function if we foolishly were to close our borders to skilled and educated immigrants. These immigrants represent human capital that can make our entire economy more productive. Immigrants have developed new products, such as the Java computer language, that have created employment opportunities for millions of Americans (Griswold, D. 2002). The Devolution of U.S. Immigration policy article uncovers the efforts to regulate and control immigration. The most recent influence of Mexican drug cartels and border violence shapes immigration policy.

Modern realities have shaped what the authors propose as a new era of immigration policy (devolution), based on the significant social and legislative ramifications in the United States since September 11, 200 (Jaggers, J., Gabbard, W., & Jaggers, S. J. (2014). The need to understand the concept of how illegal immigrants come to grips with the decision to leave all that they know behind is integral in how regulation and control should be imposed. Can the tightening grip on the Mexican border create more aggression from the drug trade resulting in innocent people being used to illegally cross into U.S. borders, making an otherwise innocent person into a criminal?

Political Influence

The political influence and detriments that go with self interest are associated to immigration policies and reform proposals. This research explores the political arguments of self-interest versus ideological and cultural explanations. The authors offer 6 components of theory and fact. Their research predictions are tested against the history of votes within the U.S. House of Representatives. Asking who supports and who opposes immigration overlooks the fact that some individuals will have incentives to support some types of immigration policies but not others.

In terms of theories of economic self-interest, the state of the art in immigration literature presents an interactive model where concerns about an individual’s economic gains or losses from immigration are conditioned by the fiscal impact of immigration policy (Milner, H. V., & Tingly, D. (2011). Politics for self interests and personal gain are an ultimate form of political disgrace. People are impacted, jobs are at risk, and the economies of scale and balance are placed in unfavorable categories. In this context, the power influence is immense and if abused can be detrimental to future policy making decisions.

Immigration Debate

The author conveys that the debate over negative immigration impact is viewed at the micro level as opposed to the micro level. Immigration gives the United States an economic edge in the world economy. Immigrants bring innovative ideas and entrepreneurial spirit to the U.S. economy. They provide business contacts to other markets, enhancing America’s ability to trade and invest profitably in the global economy. They keep our economy flexible, allowing U.S. producers to keep prices down and to respond to changing consumer demands (Griswold, D. 2002). This is often times realized after the fact, considering the extreme political decisions made in the Southwestern state of Arizona where illegal immigrants have fled, abandoning jobs that keep the communities and economy running.


Griswold (2002) says that Immigration is not undermining the American experiment; it is an integral part of it. We are a nation of immigrants. When solutions are created within the scale of policy decisions and the scope of political power to the extent of strengthening the United States’ economic lead in the world economy; everyone wins.


Jaggers, J., Gabbard, W., J., & Jaggers, S., J. (2014). The devolution of

U.S. immigration policy: An examination of the history and future of immigration policy. Journal of Policy Practice, 13(1), 3-15. doi:10.1080/15588742.2013.855695 Jiménez, T. (2008). What different generations of Mexican Americans think about immigration from Mexico? Generations, 32(4), 93-96. Retrieved from Kim, M. (2009). The political economy of immigration and the emergence of transnationalism. Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, 19(6), 675-689. Retrieved from Valdez, C., R., Lewis Valentine, J., & Padilla, B. (2013). “Why we stay”: Immigrants’ motivations for remaining in communities impacted by anti-immigration policy. Cultural Diversity & Ethnic Minority Psychology, 19(3), 279-287. doi:10.1037/a0033176 Valdez, C., R., Padilla, B., & Valentine, J., Lewis. (2013). Consequences of Arizona’s immigration policy on social capital among Mexican mothers with unauthorized immigration status. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 35(3), 303-322. doi:10.1177/0739986313488312

Read also  Research Paper on Illegal Immigration

Stoney, Sierra., Batalova, Jeanne. (2013, February 28). Mexican Immigrants in the United States: Castles, S., Miller, M. J., & Ammendola, G. (2005). The Age of Migration: International Population Movements in the Modern World: New York: The Guilford Press, (2003). Milner, H. V., & Tingley, D. (2011). The economic and political influences on different dimensions of United States immigration policy. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University. Griswold, Daniel (2002, February, 18). General Format. Retrieved from

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