Heritage: ‘Race and Ethnicity’ Not Part Of Our Immigration Recommendations

The Heritage Foundation is working to contain fallout from revelations that Jason Richwine, co-author of their recent immigration study, once called for reduced immigration in part because he believed Hispanics have a “genetic” tendency towards lower intelligence. 

In a blog post on Wednesday, Heritage vice president of communications Mike Gonzalez said that Richwine did not devise the methodology for Heritage’s study, which claimed immigration reform would cost $6.3 trillion mostly because undocumented immigrants would fail to achieve higher education and income levels.

“We believe that every person is created equal and that everyone should have equal opportunity to reach the ladder of success and climb as high as they can dream,” Gonzalez wrote.

In his 2009 Harvard thesis, Richwine wrote: “No one knows whether Hispanics will ever reach IQ parity with whites, but the prediction that new Hispanic immigrants will have low-IQ children and grandchildren is difficult to argue against.”

While Gonzalez did not criticize Richwine’s research, he said that it was not connected to Heritage’s new study. 

We welcome a rigorous, fact-based debate on the data, methodology, and conclusions of the Heritage study on the cost of amnesty. Instead, some have pointed to a Harvard dissertation written by Dr. Jason Richwine. Dr. Richwine did not shape the methodology or the policy recommendations in the Heritage paper; he provided quantitative support to lead author Robert Rector. The dissertation was written while Dr. Richwine was a student at Harvard, supervised and approved by a committee of respected scholars.

The Harvard paper is not a work product of The Heritage Foundation. Its findings do not reflect the positions of The Heritage Foundation or the conclusions of our study on the cost of amnesty to U.S. taxpayers, as race and ethnicity are not part of Heritage immigration policy recommendations.


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