Barone: No Need For A Border Fence Because Mexican Migration Is Over
MICHAEL BARONE: I don't think there has to be a border fence across the Mexico-U.S. border and, actually, one of those people who echoes that view is Texas Gov. Rick Perry. The majority of the miles of the border are along a river, the Rio Grande, Gov. Perry points out that on the U.S. side, it is on private land. Where it borders Arizona, New Mexico and California segments, it's mostly public land -- desert and uninhabitable. There's agriculture and things along parts of the border along Texas.
I think one of things to remember is this is one of the surges of migration that we've seen throughout our history, I've got a book forthcoming on this subject in the fall of 2013. From 1982 to 2007, we had this huge inrush of people, particularly from Mexico, and that's now over. It might resume, I'm thinking it probably won't.
Mexico's economy is growing faster than ours, the birthrate is now way down. The number of people entering workforce here is much less than it was. And the adverse experiences of a lot of immigrants from Mexico, these are the people that were caught up in the foreclosure crisis. You look at where the foreclosures happened, you know, you're looking out in the desert out in the San Bernardino County, you're looking in the ragged edges of Phoenix and so forth. And these were people who had dreams of achieving something in the United States; those dreams have shattered. We've actually had self-deportation, about 1 million illegal immigrants. The peak's down.
So, the border task is fewer people are going to want to cross that border illegally, and we got more technology and public attitudes, I think, favor effective enforcement. (FOXNews.com's Power Play with Chris Stirewalt, February 4, 2013)