“Illegal immigration costs taxpayers $45 billion a year in health care, education, and incarceration expenses.” – Congressman Ric Keller

I am an advocate for legal immigration where new citizens both contribute to and benefit from our society, however, I believe incentives for illegal immigrants must be removed and we should deport illegal immigrants who refuse to embrace the United States as home. My family heritage includes German, American Indian, and various other ancestries, so I appreciate both the challenges and opportunities of immigration. But, immigration today does not seem to include assimilation and acceptance of the American way of life. Some immigrants want to “have their cake and eat it too” with maintaining their original citizenship and living in the United States. We must make sure new immigrants desire to be contributing members of our society and for those with that mindset; we need to make the process more available. For those who do not, they should not be the recipients of our education system or medical care system. A recent study by the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), a nonprofit research group, estimates that Illegal Immigrants cost Tennessee taxpayers $300 million per year or more, but this is likely an underestimate since public schools cannot ask the immigration status of their students.