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STUDY: Obama’s Dismal Economic Recovery Draws Mexican Nationals Back Home

A drawn out Great Recession in the U.S. over the course of Barack Obama’s Presidency is prompting businesses to outsource operations to Mexico and contributes more to Mexicans leaving America than arriving, according to a new Pew Research study.

If Pew estimates are accurate, given inexact estimates of illegal immigrants, Mexico saw just over 1 million Mexicans and their families return from the U.S.. Meanwhile, about 870,000 left during the years 2009 to 2014. ABC 7 News reported on the study that put net flow of Mexicans to Mexico at 140,000.

A 2012 Pew Research study put net migration between the U.S. and Mexico at nearly even according to the ABC 7 report.

The report also quotes University of Southern California public policy professor Dowell Meyers as saying, “It’s not like all of a sudden they decided they missed their mothers.” Myers rather surmised, “The fact is, our recovery from the Great Recession has been miserable. It’s been miserable for everyone.”

Last April the Associated Press reported, “Mexico has become the most attractive place in North America to build new automobile factories, a shift that has siphoned jobs from the U.S. and Canada, yet helped keep car and truck prices in check for consumers.”

Within the two years leading up to April 2015 eight automakers moved or announced plans to move manufacturing to Mexico. In the week just prior to the report both Toyota and Ford had made such announcements.

ABC 7 noted that automakers “Volkswagen AG, Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Corp. have built plants across central and northern Mexico that employ thousands, spawning auto-parts plants and other ripple effects.”

The employment cost chasm between the U.S. and Mexico is among the issues at the heart of the moves according to the AP. While a car manufacturer’s cost of labor in Mexico was a reported at an average $8 an hour – that’s for wages and benefits – General Motors payed an average $58 an hour in the U.S. and Volkswagon payed an average $38 an hour at it’s Tennessee factory. The Center for Automotive Research records Volkswagen’s $38 an hour at the lowest cost per hour in the entire United States.

2016 Presidential candidate Donald Trump recently called out car companies making the move to produce their product in Mexico. Breitbart News quoted Trump:

I’d call the head of Ford, or whatever company, but I’d call the head of Ford. I’d say, ‘Congratulations, I understand you’re building a massive plant, in Mexico, and you’re taking a lot of jobs away from us in Michigan and other places. I don’t like that. I don’t like it. I just don’t like it.’ And he’ll say, ‘Well, Mr. President. It’s wonderful, wonderful for the economy. Oh, great, just great.’ It’s wonderful for whose economy? Not for our economy. We lose on everything. We lose on jobs. We lose on money. We lose on everything. So, what I’d say is the following: ‘I don’t want you to do that. And if you do it, you’re not going to have any cars coming across the border unless you pay a 35% tax.’ That’s it. That’s it. No, that’s it! And they’re going to say — they’re going to say to me, ‘Mr. President, please, please, please.’ Now, I guarantee you. Let’s say I make this call at 9:00 in the morning, by 5:00 in the afternoon, I think the deal is done, they move back to the United States.

The Pew study used analysis of “U.S. and Mexican census data and a 2014 survey by Mexico’s National Institute of Statistics and Geography,” according to ABC 7. The survey out of Mexico asked respondents to document their own residential history. The Pew study then attributed attrition of Mexicans to Mexico from the U.S. to starting or reuniting with family and border enforcement measures in addition to U.S. economic woes.

Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana

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