By Edwards, James R., Jr.
Insight on the News , Vol. 19, No. 7
If you thought a Social Security crisis was looming already, you should know it could get a lot worse quickly, if the Bush administration cuts a sweetheart deal with Mexico.
State Department and Social Security Administration officials are working quietly on a plan that rewards Mexican lawbreakers for their lawlessness. Millions of both legal and illegal aliens from Mexico could start collecting Social Security benefits.
The pending deal differs from similar agreements. So-called totalization agreements have been around since the 1970s. They allow foreigners who worked legally in the United States and paid Social Security taxes to collect benefits.
Almost all of the 20 existing agreements are with European nations. The cost to U.S. taypayers is a total of $183 million for 94,000 beneficiaries, according to the Social Security Administration. By contrast, the Mexican deal could cost, according to National Review's Joel Mowbray, $345 billion during the next 20 years. That's billion with a "B."
Take the fact that about half of the 8 million to 11 million illegal aliens in the United States are from Mexico. Take the fact that since 1990 about $300 billion has been paid from the earnings of illegal aliens using fake Social Security numbers. Add the fact that Social Security pays on a "progressive" scale, meaning low-income payers receive a heck of a lot more money in benefits than they paid in, and that Mexican illegals by and large are unskilled.
Such a totalization agreement with Mexico promises to become a money pit for Americans, arising from the sheer volume of people involved, Mexicans' high proportion in the illegal-alien population and their vast reliance on fraud, such as fraudulent Social Security numbers and other identity fraud.
This agreement uniquely "provides a foreign government Social Security money even for those of its citizens who have worked illegally in America," immigration lawyer Matt Hayes writes on FOXNews.com. He further points out that the Mexico deal "will dismantle the chief provision of the 1996 Welfare Reform Act, a law which has saved U.S. taxpayers $72 billion since its inception, because it will give Social Security payments to illegal aliens and legal aliens who have not paid into our payroll tax system for the requisite 10 years."
Ironically, the Bush administration already has warned of the impending cash crunch that Social Security faces. …