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New Questions About Enhanced Link Attribution Answered and Why You Must Read Every Word of This Report

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enhanced link attribution

What You Should Do About Enhanced Link Attribution Beginning in the Next 4 Minutes

The reason why cyber attribution is difficult stems at least in part from a deficiency of end-to-end accountability in the present online infrastructure. Improved hyperlink attribution needs to be turned on manually with the accession of a small bit of code to the typical analytics tracking code. Increased link attribution has to be turned on manually with the addition of a little bit of code to the conventional analytics tracking code.

Your tweets, just enjoy all the other posts that you share through social networking, all have exactly the same objective. Digital Marketing is not for everybody. Google Analytics is now the most popular web analytics service on the internet. If they is still not able to locate an exceptional ID, then you find a range. If Analytics is still not able to locate a distinctive ID, then you find a range. Before the change, In-Page Analytics would offer you the proportion of clicks based only on the destination URL. If you’re relying on automatic page tracking, you must inject Analytics at least one time in your application.

To add improved link attribution to an internet page, you must utilize Google Analytics asynchronous tracking code snippet. The total demo script will show up on the proper side of the webpage. To receive your enhanced results, you’re want to correct the tracking code. Be certain to have a minumum of one group listed in that area, or the Analytics tracking code is not going to be inserted.

Ruthless Enhanced Link Attribution Strategies Exploited

With Latin origins, the term communication ways to reach a standard comprehension of ideas. Don’t forget, it’s the customer that determines whether you succeed. If you’re a Hotmail user, you’re likely to experience far better security and an excellent deal of new capabilities. You’ll also have access to real-time statistics for your site, alongside the capacity to establish email notifications. No cost up-to-date technical info and support for configuration files ought to be available on the internet. Unlike the majority of other reports, you can’t locate the improved link attribution file, also referred to as in-page analytics report, in Google Analytics. Studies and clinical research demonstrate that touch is a powerful and essential element of a holistic wellness model.

In almost any sort of content, whether a video, article, or graphic, you’re in a position to typically incorporate a link that directs back to your site. If you’ve got 2 or more links to the exact same destination from 1 page, improved link attribution will reveal to you which link is getting the most clicks. You can pick the particular page being investigated to get metrics on this specific-page’s events. Determine every time a page element ends in distinct pages like a search button causing unique elements of a site. First you should go to the MonsterInsights website and click Get MonsterInsights Now’ button. Now that you’re on the Property Settings page of Google Analytics, you will need to scroll to the section labeled In-Page Analytics. Determine every time a page element results in unique pages like a search button resulting in distinct components of a website.

Increase Website Traffic Tips

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Increase Website Traffic Options

To aid you in generating more traffic for your website, here are some seven surefire tactics to improve your traffic starting from yesterday. The site traffic is among the most frequent challenges in internet business. Paying to improve website traffic is the least preferred process for a number of reasons. Growing website traffic to attain new customers is the principal concern for the majority of marketers.

increase website traffic

Promote your blog into social networking networks The social networking channels are a vital part that get visitors to your website. It is difficult to increase visitors to your site for fee but it’s not an impossible job to attain. When you get more visitors to your website you have more potential customers to clearly show your goods and solutions. Among the ways how you’re able to find more traffic to your site is by way of writing articles for databases.

When it has to do with increasing web traffic, you’ve got lots of alternatives available to pick from. There are many ways available through which you are able to boost web visitors to your on-line portal. If you wish to purchase web traffic for your internet shop, then you can get in touch with them and receive valuable services. Therefore, the only procedure to understand you’re doing well is that you have to improve web traffic for your site.

The Debate Over Increase Website Traffic

The most excellent approach to boost visitors to your website is to impart exceptional subject matters which will invite folks to actually read them. Although getting traffic could be difficult it can be well worth the time and effort that you put into it. All you need to do is to be aware of the ways on the way it is possible to get totally free traffic. Offering the best solutions for particular problems is another of the very best techniques to get totally free traffic.

New Step by Step Roadmap for Increase Website Traffic

There are a great deal of methods to develop your traffic. So there are several strategies to find visitors to your site. Traffic will surely increase since they know that you could provide the things that they require. Increasing visitors to your website does not need to be accomplished by a specialist. One of the absolute most full proof ways to increase your site traffic is by utilizing infographics, it’s deemed as a potent advertising tool for blogs and websites. If you wish to increase website traffic with links to your site here are a couple of things you can do. Increasing website traffic may be a rewarding experience financially.

Keeping with ezine’s reputation, the web site boasts of millions of visitors every day, traversing the website for some sort of information daily. Even though it might be effectively sneaky, such attempt can cause your site to be permanently prohibited as it’s thought of as an illegal type of SEO. In order to improve website traffic you must submit your site to the search engines. Following that, you can spot precisely where you advertise your site and the particular advertisement clicked. Therefore the site needs to be responsive. There are lots of websites with ad space available at very affordable prices.

Who Else Wants to Learn About Increase Website Traffic?

People like to be abreast of what is happening with your site and they like to get specific promotions that may drive them back to your site to produce a purchase of goods or solutions. After all, you don’t create a site in order for it to just to sit there and don’t have any 1 look at it. Just take a second and consider the vital reason YOU take a look at a website. Establish a signature page that you’re able to utilize to sign out that includes your site. Hope it is a great reason to acquire a mobile friendly site.

What Absolutely Everyone Is Saying About Content Delivery Network and What You Should Do

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The content is most likely the most frequently experienced. Therefore, the site content plays a big part in every business and it will become essential to know the value of content writing prior to going to employ content writers. Web content writing company’s website is a significant source of information regarding the provider.

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Definitions of Content Delivery Network

Content delivery networks are a part of a general site strategy, but they’re not a very first step to take when improving your website. Content delivery networks or CDN is among the technical advancements going on in the sector of networking. In addition, if there’s a network connection to the servers where it’s hosted, then the website could be used without an online connection and so are not able to retrieve the CDN files.

Top Content Delivery Network Choices

Content must be original and it cannot be copied from another site. The site content ought to be influential and contain maximum information about the products and services available through that specific site. The content on the site ought to be descriptive and informative. There are numerous gift website content writing services from India and they may be accessible on the web.

Website Content clearly, you write content on the site content writing service. Technical content help to advertise our goods in the marketplace. So it’s quite essential that the content needs to be fresh and free from grammatical error. Additional the content should flow well and must be simple to comprehend. As dynamic content needs to be requested from the origin server for each and every request, increasing the speed that every request travels can enhance the general performance. As more dynamic content is made, optimization is essential to enhance performance and the user experience.

There is not a single approach to write website content. You make sure that your site content that users can grab attention of your requirements. Website content should be catchy and informative. Additionally, the content of your site can provide you insight in your style of writing and acting. For that reason, it’s very important to get content on your website your users would really like to read and which precisely targets your niche, and sets you aside from the competition. If you don’t happen to compose unique content for your site, then you cannot get viewers.

Website content differs to other kinds of written mediums. Content Writing (also thought of as website content writing), has come to be a booming and decent career prospect for the folks that have a knack for writing. If you’re on the lookout for a very best content writing business in Delhi, then touch Base to discuss how you need to leverage the ability of writing to do good for you and your company. Or it may just be new content that you would like to unveil gradually to your audiences. Content is also crucial to have rankings from several search engines. Content writing services online can readily be detected.

The content is just one of the absolute most significant part a web site and optimized content is unquestionably one of the principal means whereby you’ll be able to get your site ranked highly in search engines. There are several different kinds of Web content. The content writing and the internet design has to be synchronized in any way times. Hence, it will be responsible for the traffic to a web portal and eventually for the business revenue. For that reason, it’s critical to write excellent content that is easily acceptable to readers in the very first blow.

Want to Know More About Text Editor Tools?

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Since it’s an open source language, any editor can be employed to compose the code and it can be used with various libraries for graphics and other special outcomes. Naturally there’s more to picking an editor than simply looking at its specs. If you are searching for an editor that’s extremely helpful for diagramming, you can set your trust on the OmniGraffle 2. The Sublime Text editor is presently in its second edition.

New Ideas Into Text Editor Tools Never Before Revealed

Only in text mode it’s possible to insert code in your content. So it is simple to compose the code without using any particular tool or program. You will need to have Google Analytics code and first start an account by means of your site to acquire the Analytic code specific to your website but that’s easy too.

The Pain of Text Editor Tools

If you would like to develop a functional and user friendly site, employ a professional web programming company for the job. With that said users can edit several files at the same time whilst jumping between all their files, a great alternative if you chance to be cutting and paste files with each other to form one particular master file. To switch off the editing tool, the user has to be logged into the FamilySearch Wiki. As it is built for a particular user, its specifications and features are in agreement with the user’s needs.

Our software functions as a YouTube converter too, and allows you to convert YouTube videos easily, viewing them at any moment you desire! The various sorts of application software are used by individual users and business enterprises too, and they have many advantages of doing this. In addition, the program can’t tell who’s driving and who is a passenger, therefore it can be impractical and very annoying for whoever really isn’t the driver. Computer software are widely common today and we cannot imagine computers without them. There are various sorts of computer program. Various kinds of image editing software If the goal is to edit or modify digital images, there are three kinds of photo editing programs out there on the market today.

The Key to Successful Text Editor Tools

There are a great deal of text editors to select from. Some text editors can edit unusually huge files like log files or a whole database put in a single file. If you’ve used a text editor or a world processor for developing a paper resume it’s possible to simply copy it and paste precisely the same into a WYSIWYG editor.

Life, Death, and Text Editor Tools

The editor doesn’t require all sorts of installation on your PC. The WordPress editor already provides the most frequent editing tools in its toolbar make certain that you are able to observe all available tools. You just need to discover the editor which gets you there the quickest. If it comes to text editors, there are typical characteristics that they all share. As a coder, locating a text editor that is right for you is crucial. In the end, the ideal text editor is the one that you work most efficiently with. A file made by a text editor, whether or not it was the identical text editor or not, will just display the text contents of the document.

Top Choices of Top Shopping Cart Software

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top shopping cart software

The shopping cart ought to be an enjoyable and trustworthy experience for customers. An internet shopping cart will make it possible for you to earn people more clearly aware about your existence. So, best internet shopping cart assist you make your business on the internet.

Your shopping cart should make website effortless to utilize for everyone even a totally new user feels comfortable when using your site. Instead, you wish to obtain a shopping cart that will provide you with with what you need now in addition to some expanding room. Today you may rest assured that you will find a shopping cart whenever you log on to the world wide web. The ideal shopping cart on the marketplace is BigCommerce, followed closely by Volusion.

For making any form of eCommerce website you’ve got to include shopping cart in your plan as you can’t control your site without shopping cart. You need to avoid shopping carts that require your site visitors to input an excessive amount of info. You will also have to make sure the shopping cart is readily accessible on all the pages because when the customer decides what things to buy it will turn into the previous thing that the customer will click to validate the purchase. Because of that simple fact, most shopping carts on the market nowadays use dynamic URLs that are practically not possible for search engine spider to crawl correctly.

The Tried and True Method for Top Shopping Cart Software in Step by Step Detail

There are plenty of software to select from, so make sure to select wisely. In internet marketing, shopping cart software is a part of eCommerce system on an internet server that enables visitors on an online site in order to choose items for eventual purchase. The following suggestions will help you discover the appropriate shopping cart software for your ecommerce website.

You don’t wish to become overwhelmed by software that wouldn’t satisfy your requirements to start with. When you begin searching for shopping cart software you want to understand how to read product reviews to guarantee you acquire the very best understanding and understanding of the product being sold. When you learn more about the way the shopping cart software works when implemented then you are able to decide what things to buy. The very best shopping cart software for a specific website is one which serves best for its requirements and which offers maximum ease in navigation remembering the majority of data and number of steps necessary to get to the conclusion of some approach.

The Fundamentals of Top Shopping Cart Software Revealed

To raise customer satisfaction, you want to be sure that the ecommerce software is connected with the inventory systems in your business. Picking the most suitable ecommerce software for you can be a struggle. It may be a daunting task without proper guidance. Undoubtedly ecommerce software has its own qualities to raise businesses profits, but still there are a few common advantages that are the portion of almost ever ecommerce software.

The very last thing you would like to do is have them start over so you will need a shopping cart software that will readily enable the customer return shopping and back to the shopping cart free of confusion and seamless transition. Shopping Cart Software functions as a new gateway for success to everyone who would like to venture in the realm of online marketing. What makes CS-Cart shopping cart software stand from the crowd is the access to useful excess options that we’ve included along with standard capabilities.

The Number One Article on Content Delivery Network

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content delivery network

Based on the harshness of the matter, you can quit watching, or continue as you’re already invested in the content. With users located throughout the Earth, content doesn’t reach everyone at the identical pace. As dynamic content needs to be requested from the origin server for each and every request, increasing the speed that every request travels can enhance the total performance. As more dynamic content is made, optimization is crucial to boost performance and the user experience. Furthermore, the original content of sites is often plagiarized by other people, including important data and the site style, causing a wonderful loss to creators. After reviewing the info presented above, choosing whether to go with an ADN or a CDN shouldn’t be a challenging choice.

Content Delivery Network at a Glance

Networks give you accessibility to people with whom you may confer and strategize. Employing a content delivery network will boost site loading speeds for website visitors from all around the world without the demand for any extra business program. Content delivery networks or CDN is among the technical advancements going on in the sector of networking.

Design your network in order to adjust whenever there are spikes in gaming usage. NOIA network works as another layer to the current solution. So whenever your network receives a new member, additionally, it receives that member’s network and everybody who belongs to it. A superb content delivery network can deal with a number of the communication necessary for setting up SSL-encrypted connections, a benefit that is growing more important with the growth in security difficulties.

Your Network Identify your current network. Considering it’s a fully distributed network, it has a great number of nodes distributed throughout the world. Other people build a worldwide network and have a little number of geographical PoPs. A content delivery network can accelerate the transmission of large files, cutting back the opportunity to select and recover the content from where you are. Utilizing a Content Delivery Network (CDN) may have a tremendous effect on your site and the service it gives.

When choosing a CDN company, it’s important to pick a service which delivers the necessary level of performance, and that supports your required media type. A cloud service like YouTube is not really a single site. Internet providers will also benefit. Some services are getting to be so popular that their servers cannot withstand incoming requests. On the flip side, CDN service is more reliable and robust, and hence it can function as a trustworthy backup once the stream isn’t available from peer nodes. In other words, CDN services make sure browsers can efficiently download your internet page and all the services that you offer. Amazon’s CDN service is known as CloudFront.

Content delivery is essential to marketing success. Anonymous content delivery utilizing proxy re-encryption is just one of Ester Network’s feature. Distributed networks open amazing new possibilities as soon as it comes to content shipping, but we have to be mindful that it still does not fix all the difficulties. Peer-to-peer livestream delivery works best when many men and women tune in for the exact stream at the exact time. In truth, it’s the fastest log delivery in the business. As a consequence the cost of content delivery is kept relatively significant. As the amount of content delivery gets lower, companies including Netflix, Hulu or HBO have more cash on their hands.

Warning Signs on Seo Techniques You Need to Know About

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The very first technique is to enhance engagement. If you utilize the appropriate search engine optimisation techniques, you can generate traffic to your website easily. As stated earlier that basic search engine marketing techniques which we used to before aren’t working anymore. When it regards off-page search engine optimization methods, networking can help save you.

The aforementioned techniques are sure to help you sail though 2018. It is also feasible you’ve been doing a search engine marketing technique from an unreliable source that’s doing more bad than good for your site. Therefore, it’s regarded as one of the greatest techniques for voice search SEO. Though it might look easy, so as to implement the correct search engine optimization techniques, you want to have a really good sound comprehension and an in-depth understanding of what is new or on the horizon for ranking things.

Which is the reason you should first analyze the search engine optimization strategy that you are using. Search engine marketing strategies make it simpler to do the things flawlessly and eliminate the chance of errors too. If you’re still using the old search engine marketing strategies, your site might be undiscoverable or it can be found, but by the incorrect men and women. You cannot count on old age SEO strategies to find the finest in the current scenario.

Do not ever underestimate user experience factor in regards to SEO. Generally, it is going to help you discover the new methods of SEO to stay 1 step ahead of your competition. Search engine optimisation is the sole way to receive free traffic from the various search engines. Search engine marketing is the 1 technique which can be used for boosting your rank for getting your site on the very first page of the search outcomes. Don’t use too many keywords as it might make your SEO unfruitful since the content will get unreadable. Search engine optimization is still as essential as it was then and it’s always likely to be, so long as the search engines exist. Off-page SEO is among their principal tools to stay informed about the changing digital landscape.

The Ugly Secret of Seo Techniques

Search Engine Optimisation (search engine optimization) is critical to raise your site traffic. Search engine optimisation is about experiments. SEO we all know is a key element in driving traffic to a specific website. Off-page SEO means that you’re using different tactics to boost visitors to your internet page.

Search Engine Optimization, better referred to as SEO, is an essential part of internet marketing. Therefore, if you’re planning to utilize SEO for promoting your goods or services online, you need to have a thorough understanding of on-page SEO so you are able to implement it wisely. A lot of people think off-page SEO is a practice of producing the backlinks only but it isn’t only about the hyperlink building.

Top Choices of Seo Techniques

Understanding SEO is important to come up with effective search engine optimisation techniques that increases your search traffic and subsequently expand your organization. The SEO is part of the marketing that make sure your website is visible to each individual. To explain briefly, SEO is an internet marketing technique that aids your small business website to rank higher in popular search engines such as Google, Yahoo, Bing etc.. On-page SEO is the means of optimizing every internet page of your site in order for it to rank better in the Search Engine Results Pages.

The Website Audit Game

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An audit shouldn’t be stopped with a list of what’s effective and what is not. So, it ultimately gives the site administrators an opportunity to inspect the site for its robustness and its technical framework. When done correctly, a search engine marketing audit will allow you to know what’s working on your existing website. Making SEO web site audit part of the company road map ought to be among the most important undertakings for a corporation.

The Good, the Bad and Website Audit

An audit may be the best method to dramatically better your site’s rankings while not having to alter the fundamental design for the website. Before jumping in and making changes to any component of your site, a site audit is essential. A free site audit could possibly be exactly what you demand.

A site audit is the equivalent of a complete physical for maintaining optimal wellbeing or an extensive inspection of your vehicle to ensure it’s running in its finest. It can be one of the most powerful, and positive things a brand does when attempting to improve their presence online. Doing a web site audit isn’t simple, especially when you’re not tech-savvy. For example, your site audit might incorporate a journey into search engine visibility, a consideration into how simple it’s to navigate through your site, and what your advertising mix resembles.

The audit shouldn’t be restricted to the site alone. Website audit will likewise be able to check on the range of visitors that the website has achieved for a specific timeframe alongside its rankings in the various search engines. A site audit also enlightens the site proprietors to re-assess the efficacy of the site in light of its capacity to generate leads and conversions. Thus, you’re ready to commence a proper search engine marketing website audit.

The Appeal of Website Audit

Website Audit is about in-depth study of the site. It is applicable for online businesses and improves different aspects of the websites. As soon as you get your entire site audit, you may then make the modifications though you get started working on a web site promotion strategy.

Besides the bad free advice from forums which could damage a website there’s the very good free tips that can also damage a website. If your site isn’t performing as well as you’d like, it could be time to do a site audit. A web site is quite a cost effective way of advertising. So that your site would be worked on by a specialist. Flat websites vs. deep websites The two most frequent site navigation structures are flat websites and deep websites.

When you audit your website you’re essentially searching for elements which are working, together with elements that aren’t working and will need to get updated. At times, websites have certain parts that are too hard to understand for ordinary web browsers. Thus, they must be compatible with different mobiles. As your website is a significant tool for helping you to grow your company. Needless to say, what it costs will be based on the website so that it’s tricky to put a genuine figure on it. There are times that you don’t even visit our own site very often so you may not know that something isn’t working.

If you don’t have a site, your possible clients might feel that you’re a fly-by-night operation. Websites are like leasing a vehicle. Overall, you will discover that learning how to earn a site isn’t as difficult as you could think. Carrying out a technical audit of a site is among the absolute most important things you will need to do in order to enhance a websites overall growth.

How to Choose Search Engine Marketing

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There are two sorts of paid search. Paid search may also be referred to as Search marketing, pay-per-click or cost-per-click advertising. There are some different things you can do in order to rank better in 2018 for local search. First and foremost issue is the mobile search because the individuals always want all the micro info in their mobile so we have to customise our website for the mobile devices.

The search engines utilize an auction system, where website owners may bid on keywords that may be applied as search terms by users of the search engines when they’re trying to find information, goods, or solutions. They are tremendously popular and are the most widely used tool on the Internet. As the search engines and societal networks keep growing into even more critical regions of the whole internet, online marketing will grow more crucial, and if you’re able to master that, specifically with techniques including SEO you will be well positioned to garner the rewards.

If it doesn’t satisfy, they will quickly move to a different search engine. The search engines have begun to provide far more interest to the Social Media space. From a quality standpoint, it is not very difficult to please. To put it differently, it is one of the few places on the Internet where a company can connect with a user at the point of interest. A decentralized blockchain-based search engine provides the chance to distribute the necessary resources.

Getting the Best Search Engine Marketing

Forum marketing includes leaving your signature file after every post which leaves a hyperlink to your site and each time you make a post that’s a backlink to your website right there. Most digital techniques of marketing have a little likelihood of succeeding. Article marketing can work in the same manner because when you write articles on a specific topic you build trust in your readers that you’re knowledgeable in regards to the topic accessible. Without regard to the industry you’re in, marketing is critical in earning your company work and prosper. Therefore, email marketing works best when it’s personalized. Finally, it is also meant to remind people about a business. SEM or Search Engine Marketing is a fundamental part of online marketing.

Twenty or thirty decades past, there was not any such thing as online advertising. It is different from traditional marketing because you have the potential to reach people globally. Digital promotion is one of the medium that provides multiple SMM services, that helps in developing an in depth campaign delivering desired benefits. Viral marketing includes growing your customer base by encouraging your clients to refer other clients. There are two kinds of search engine marketing, paid inclusion or you could optimize your site for organic search inclusion and become indexed at no cost. With search engine marketing, it is totally different. It’s indeed imperative that you use search engine marketing in order to advertise your site and just then you are going to have superior chance.

How Legalizing Marijuana Is Securing the Border: The Border Wall, Drug Smuggling, and Lessons for Immigration Policy

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December 19, 2018

President Trump has repeatedly cited drug smuggling to justify a border wall. Because it is difficult to conceal, marijuana is the main drug transported between ports of entry where a border wall would matter. However, Border Patrol seizure figures demonstrate that marijuana flows have fallen continuously since 2014, when states began to legalize marijuana. After decades of no progress in reducing marijuana smuggling, the average Border Patrol agent between ports of entry confiscated 78 percent less marijuana in fiscal year (FY) 2018 than in FY 2013.

As a result, the value of all drugs seized by the average agent has fallen by 70 percent since FY 2013. Without marijuana coming in between ports of entry, drug smuggling activity now primarily occurs at ports of entry, where a border wall would have no effect. In FY 2018, the average inspector at ports of entry made drug seizures that were three times more valuable overall than those made by Border Patrol agents between ports of entry — a radical change from 2013 when Border Patrol agents averaged more valuable seizures. This is because smugglers bring mainly hard drugs through ports. By weight, the average port inspector seized 8 times more cocaine, 17 times more fentanyl, 23 times more methamphetamine, and 36 times more heroin than the average Border Patrol agent seized at the physical border in early 2018.

Given these trends, a border wall or more Border Patrol agents to stop drugs between ports of entry makes little sense. State marijuana legalization starting in 2014 did more to reduce marijuana smuggling than the doubling of Border Patrol agents or the construction of hundreds of miles of border fencing did from 2003 to 2009. As more states — particularly on the East Coast — legalize marijuana in 2019, these trends will only accelerate. The administration should avoid endangering this success and not prosecute state-legal sellers of marijuana. This success also provides a model for addressing illegal immigration. Just as legalization has reduced the incentives to smuggle marijuana illegally, greater legal migration opportunities undercut the incentive to enter illegally. Congress should recognize marijuana legalization’s success and replicate it for immigration.

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Introduction

Cross-border drug smuggling is a primary justification for President Trump’s calls to hire 5,000 additional Border Patrol agents and build a massive border wall. However, the evidence indicates that legalization of marijuana has more effectively controlled the illegal trafficking of marijuana than interdiction and enforcement alone. From 2003 to 2009, Border Patrol doubled its agents, constructed more than 600 miles of fencing, and introduced new surveillance technologies. Despite this, the annual rate of marijuana seizures between ports of entry by Border Patrol remained unchanged at about its average of 115 pounds per agent through FY 2013.

Following the full legalization of marijuana sales in six states beginning with Colorado and Washington in FY 2014, the rate of seizures by Border Patrol declined 78 percent, from 114 pounds per agent in FY 2013 to 25 pounds per agent in FY 2018. Total marijuana seizures by all Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agencies declined by nearly 2 million pounds from FY 2013 to FY 2017. Other drugs have not entirely substituted for this decline in marijuana. The street value of all drugs seized by the average agent between ports of entry also fell by 70 percent from FY 2013 to FY 2018.

Today, a border wall would have little effect on the most valuable drug smuggling. In FY 2018, the average inspector at ports of entry made drug seizures valued at about $71,000, while the average Border Patrol agent made seizures valued at just $23,000. Moreover, if the goal is to target “hard” drugs, spending resources between ports of entry would also be less effective than at ports of entry. Excluding interior checkpoints, Border Patrol agents between ports of entry accounted for just 8 percent of hard drug seizures by value in 2018.

Marijuana legalization provides a model for dealing with illegal border crossers. Legalizing immigration of lesser-skilled workers has similarly helped control human smuggling and illegal migration more effectively than immigration enforcement alone. During the last 60 years, a 10 percent increase in the number of guest worker admissions was associated with an almost 9 percent decrease in apprehensions per agent. From 1986 to 2017, the number of guest worker admissions increased twentyfold, while the number of apprehensions per agent declined 97 percent.

These findings call into question the efficacy and necessity of constructing physical barriers and surging additional border agents to control the flow of drugs and people between ports of entry. Instead, they indicate that a better approach to managing human and drug smuggling would be to hire more officers at ports of entry, increase legal channels for migration, and legalize marijuana nationwide. These alternative strategies have proved more effective than enforcement alone.

Marijuana Legalization

The federal government currently prohibits the production, sale, and possession of marijuana (cannabis) by classifying it as a Schedule I drug, defined as “drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.”1 Despite federal prohibition of marijuana, the United States has one of the highest use rates in the world, with nearly half of Americans reporting that they have consumed it at some point in their lives.2 Almost 36 million Americans used marijuana in 2016, and the total marijuana market is valued at roughly $56.1 billion.3

For decades, state laws complemented federal marijuana prohibition with separate state penalties. Starting in 2014, however, six states have allowed fully legalized recreational marijuana sales for adults for the first time since prohibition began in the 1930s (Figure 1).4Washington and Colorado first opened legal dispensaries in 2014. Oregon followed in July 2015, Alaska in October 2016, Nevada in July 2017, and California in January 2018. Maine and Massachusetts have also voted to legalize commercial marijuana sales, though delays in implementing regulations and issuing licenses will prevent any sales in those states until 2019. In 2018, Michigan voted to legalize recreational marijuana, with the first legal sales expected in 2020.5

Figure 1: States with legal marijuana sales

Source: National Council of State Legislatures, “Marijuana Overview,” November 13, 2018.

As of September 2018, one in six Americans lived in states with legal marijuana, and one in four lived either in or next to states with legal marijuana sales.6 After legal sales open in Michigan, Massachusetts, and Maine, nearly one in four will live in states with legal sales, and almost two in three will either live in or next to those states.

While state-level legalizations do not prevent federal enforcement, the Obama administration adopted a practice — though not an official policy — of noninterference with state-legal marijuana sales.7 The Trump administration has largely followed the prior practice, but former attorney general Jeff Sessions did rescind an Obama-era memorandum requiring federal district attorneys to consider state legality when determining which cases to pursue.8 District attorneys in Colorado and California quickly issued statements stating that the rescission would not affect their prosecutorial practices.9 While President Trump has publicly stated his opposition to cracking down on legal marijuana, former White House press secretary Sean Spicer told reporters to expect “greater enforcement” of marijuana laws, and the White House Marijuana Policy Coordination Committee has launched a public relations campaign to undermine state legalization efforts.10

Before the wave of state-level marijuana legalizations, the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime estimated that drug smugglers imported two-thirds of all marijuana consumed in the United States.11 A 2010 study estimated that Mexican marijuana alone accounted for 40 to 67 percent of all U.S. consumption.12 In 2013, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) found that marijuana smuggling “has occurred at consistently high levels over the past 10 years, primarily across the US-Mexico border.”13

Legalized markets directly affect the illegal markets for marijuana. Not only is it easier to obtain domestically produced cannabis today, legal marijuana is also more uniform and of much higher quality than the illegal Mexican product.14 One study for the Colorado Department of Revenue found that a “comparison of inventory tracking data and consumption estimates signals that Colorado’s preexisting illicit marijuana market for residents and visitors has been fully absorbed into the regulated market.”15 Marijuana legally grown in states where it is legalized often supplies consumers in states where marijuana is still outlawed. In 2014, 44 percent of marijuana sales in Denver were to residents of other states.16 The Colorado study found that “legal in-state purchases that are consumed out of state” are likely occurring.17 This places further downward pressure on prices and has prompted lawsuits by prohibitionist states against Colorado.18

A prelegalization study estimated that after legalization, it would likely be more expensive to smuggle marijuana from Mexico to every state in the continental United States except Texas than to have it sent from Colorado and Washington.19 This competition appears to be affecting Mexican marijuana prices. Mexican growers have reported that marijuana prices in Mexico have recently fallen between 50 and 70 percent after U.S. legalizations.20According to the DEA, overall domestic American production has grown because of the new state-approved marijuana markets.21 Customs and Border Protection (CBP) itself has hypothesized that one explanation for the decline could be that “legalization in the United States [h]as reduced demand” for Mexican marijuana.22 The fact that some cartels have taken to using drug tunnels to smuggle migrants — who are less profitable and more readily identifiable — is further evidence of the effects of legalization.23

Efforts to Combat Drug Smuggling

Drug interdiction has a long history in the United States, dating back to alcohol prohibition. During the 1920s, the interdiction of bootleggers served as a principal justification for the creation of the Border Patrol. Labeling them “unscrupulous” and their traffic “nefarious,” government reports repeatedly called on Congress for more agents, money, and aircraft to interdict alcohol.24 From 1926 to 1934, agents intercepted nearly 2 million quarts of liquor.25 Nonetheless, only the end of Prohibition brought about the collapse of the bootleg trade, which dropped 90 percent from 1930 to 1934 and finally disappeared entirely in 1935.

After alcohol prohibition, smuggling of other prohibited drugs has taken over as justification for increasing Border Patrol spending. Since 1951, the Border Patrol’s annual reports have highlighted its contributions to the “drive against narcotics,” particularly its seizures of Mexican marijuana.26 While Mexico has also prohibited the cultivation of the plant since the 1920s, the relative lack of enforcement, the good growing climate, and the differences in economic development between that country and the United States have led Mexico to become the main supplier for its northern neighbor.27 But in 1937, Congress effectively banned the sale of marijuana.28

Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has the primary responsibility for interdicting drug traffickers entering the United States. DHS divides its efforts between four agencies: the Coast Guard, which patrols the coasts of the United States; the Office of Field Operations (OFO), which inspects travelers entering legally through ports of entry; Border Patrol, which surveils the northern and southern borders; and Air and Marine Operations (AMO), which supports Border Patrol’s efforts between ports of entry with aircraft and marine vessels. OFO, Border Patrol, and AMO are all divisions of Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Together, these four agencies dedicate $4.2 billion annually specifically to drug interdiction.29

Since 1965, Congress has invested $64 billion to secure the border from illegal immigration as well as drug smuggling.30 Some 82 percent of the spending has occurred in the last two decades alone. Border Patrol has a force of nearly 20,000 agents, a fivefold increase over the level in 1992.31 AMO has an expansive fleet of 286 vessels, 246 aircraft, and 9 unmanned aerial drones designed to spot and interdict traffickers.32 Since 2000, Border Patrol has constructed nearly 600 miles of border fencing and barriers.33

In addition, CBP has nearly 1,500 canine teams used to detect drugs.34 The agency has deployed an extensive system of surveillance equipment between ports of entry, including drones and towers, and adopted new scanners and other technology at ports of entry.35Despite these purchases, the DHS inspector general concluded in 2016 that the department “could not ensure its drug interdiction efforts met required national drug control outcomes nor accurately assess the impact of the approximately $4.2 billion it spends annually on drug control activities.”36 Similarly, none of its spending had any noticeable effect on the amount of drug smuggling prior to the legalization of marijuana in several states in 2014.

The White House has proposed several additional measures to deter drug smuggling along the border. These measures include a southwestern border wall with Mexico, which carries an estimated price tag of at least $22 billion to construct.37 In addition, the administration has requested that Congress fund the hiring of an additional 5,000 Border Patrol agents to patrol the southwest border.38 President Trump and the White House have repeatedly connected these efforts to build a border wall with drug smuggling, in particular, the smuggling of opioids like fentanyl and heroin.39

Measuring Drug Flows

Because illicit marijuana moves in the black market, no consistent and reliable data exist on the quantities that smugglers bring into the United States each year. The best available proxy for estimating changes in the flow is the amount that the government seizes at the border. This measure does not provide a reliable predictor of the absolute amount being smuggled, but it can capture trends in the flow. Although the total amount that makes it into the country is likely many times greater than the amount that the government seizes, a relationship will exist between seizures and inflows that allows an approximation of the trends up or down in total flows. In the absence of any other changes that significantly improve or hamper the effectiveness of smuggling or enforcement, more drug smuggling will generally result in greater seizures.

The main possibility that could make seizures a poor proxy for relative flows between years is if the effectiveness of enforcement or smuggling is wildly inconsistent, resulting in a wide variance in the amounts of drugs that agents discover. For example, if most drugs seized at the border came from only a few seizures, or most drugs smuggled came from only a few attempts, the amounts could fluctuate so widely that they would be worthless in assessing changes in the level of smuggling over time.

But because the marijuana seized crossing the border is spread out over many seizures — more than 12,000 annually — chance is less of a factor in these overall trends.40 Moreover, as seen in Figure 2 in the following section, the amount each agent seized was quite consistent before 2014 at an average of 115 pounds per year. Prior to legalization, the average year-over-year change from 2003 to 2013 was almost zero, compared to 25 percent declines from 2014 to 2018 — greater than one standard deviation downward from the prelegalization trend each year.41 Other data stretching back to the early 1990s support the conclusion that each agent has consistently seized a similar amount.42 Variation in the effectiveness of enforcement or smuggling cannot explain the sudden and persistent decline in seizures over the last five years.

Another issue is that increased enforcement would likely lead to more seizures. It is possible, however, to control for the level of enforcement by focusing on the quantity seized per agent, rather than the aggregate amount for the entire agency (Figure 2). One difficulty with the per-agent measurement is that the effectiveness of agents could decrease with each new hire, so the result could measure just the declining utility of the marginal hire rather than a real decline in smuggling. When the agency doubled its labor force from 2003 to 2011, however, the rate of seizures per agent remained flat, while the agency slightly reduced the number of agents during the period of declining seizures from 2014 to 2018. These facts suggest that the decline in seizures per agent is not an effect of diminishing returns from increasing the size of the force.43

In the immigration context, researchers often use the number of apprehensions of border crossers per agent to estimate year-to-year trends in total inflows of illegal crossers of the southwest border.44 The validity of this measure has recently received support from a 2017 DHS report that used survey data to estimate the number of total successful crossings for the 17-year period from 2000 to 2016.45 Comparing these estimates to the per-agent apprehension figures during this time indicates that 86 percent of the variance in successful entries can be predicted by the number of apprehensions per agent, making apprehensions a very strong predictor of the year-to-year trends in successful illegal crossings. Given the similarities between illegal entry of people and the illegal entry of drugs, the same is likely true for drug seizures and smuggling.

Seizures also fail to capture policy changes that could direct agents to prioritize or deprioritize marijuana smuggling, though it is not clear how Border Patrol could, as a technical matter, target a specific illicit drug without also seizing other drugs in the process. In any case, formal policy on marijuana smuggling has not changed during the relevant period, and there has been no apparent change in informal policy priorities. Moreover, the decline in marijuana seizures has occurred across multiple agencies and administrations. These factors make informal policy priorities an unlikely explanation for the trends.

Less Marijuana Smuggling

State-level marijuana legalization has undercut demand for illegal Mexican marijuana, which in turn has decreased the amount of drug smuggling into the United States across the southwest border. Because it is so much more difficult to conceal than other drugs, marijuana prior to legalization was, according to the DEA, “predominately smuggled between, instead of through, the ports of entry.”46 For this reason, the most important agency for marijuana interdiction is the Border Patrol, which patrols the areas between ports of entry.

Figure 2 reports the number of pounds of marijuana seized annually per Border Patrol agent and compares these figures to the total length of the border fences in a year. From FY 2003 to FY 2009, Border Patrol doubled its workforce and constructed hundreds of miles of fences, yet this increased enforcement did not reduce marijuana smuggling.47 Each agent annually seized virtually the same quantity of marijuana through 2013, indicating roughly the same overall inflow of the illegal substance.48 From 2013 to 2018, however, the amount of marijuana each Border Patrol agent seized declined by 78 percent.

Figure 2: Marijuana seizures and length of border fences, FY 2013 to FY 2018

*Projected based on the first eleven months of the fiscal year.

Sources: U.S. Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General, “Independent Review of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Reporting of Drug Control Performance Summary Reports,” 2008, 2011; Customs and Border Protection, “Sector Profiles,” 2012-2017; Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Carla Argueta, “Border Security,” Congressional Research Service, April 19, 2016.

Even within FY 2018, the first three months of the fiscal year — before California legalized sales in January — were 29 percent above the next eight months.49 Marijuana smuggling has also not shifted toward entering through ports of entry. The total quantity of marijuana seized by the OFO, the agency that handles admissions at ports of entry, has dropped by 34 percent from 2013 to 2018 (Table 1).50 Seizures have decreased over water and airborne smuggling routes. While numbers for FY 2018 are not available yet, Air and Marine Operations interdicted 42 percent fewer pounds of marijuana in 2017 than in 2013.51Likewise, the Coast Guard has seen a 65 percent decline in marijuana seizures during that period.52 Overall, all DHS agencies seized 56 percent less marijuana in 2017 than 2013.

Table 1: Department of Homeland Security marijuana seizures (in pounds), FY 2013 to FY 2018

*Approximation based on figures for all drug seizures.
**Projected based on the first 11 months of the fiscal year.

Sources: U.S. Department of State, “Narcotics Control Reports,” 2014-2018; Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Air and Marine Operations, Reports and Testimony, 2013; 2014; 2015; 2016; 2017.

Full legalization of marijuana in several states dramatically increased the amount of marijuana sales that occur legally in the United States. A relatively small amount of legal marijuana sales had occurred prior to 2014 under the auspices of legal medicinal use, and in 2013 and 2014, four states — Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Illinois, and Maryland — legalized medical marijuana. But these states account for just 4 percent of medical marijuana users nationwide, so it is unlikely that they changed the trends substantially.53Full legalization increased the amount of legal sales from about $1.5 billion to $9.7 billion from 2013 to 2017.54 This increase coincided with a 66 percent drop in the street value of all DHS marijuana seizures — a decline from $2.3 billion in 2013 to $765 million in 2017 (Figure 3).55

Figure 3: Legal marijuana sales and street value of all DHS marijuana seizures, FY 2013 to FY 2017

Sources: Arcview Market Research, “The State of Legal Marijuana Markets,” 1st-6th editions; author’s calculations based on drug valuations and amounts from Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2018; U.S. Department of State, “Narcotics Control Reports”; Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Air and Marine Operations, Reports and Testimony, 2013; 2014; 2015; 2016; 2017.

The street values of a pound of marijuana estimated by CBP also highlight the increased availability of domestic marijuana. From 2012 to 2017, the average street value of a pound of marijuana seized by CBP declined by 40 percent, dropping from $794 per pound in 2012 to just $474 per pound in 2017.56 Legal marijuana is competing with the drug cartels and lowering prices, which undercuts the financial incentive to smuggle across the border.

Other Drug Smuggling

Mexican drug cartels have responded to their declining share of the marijuana market by smuggling other drugs through ports of entry but have failed to make up for the decline in marijuana smuggling. Most drugs other than marijuana are smuggled through ports of entry because traffickers can more easily conceal them. For this reason, Figure 4 presents seizures both between and at ports of entry.57 In FY 2013, marijuana accounted for 98 percent of all border and customs drug seizures — both between and at ports of entry — by weight. By FY 2018, that percentage had declined to 84 percent.58 While non-marijuana drug seizures have increased — indicating that cartels may attempt to compensate by switching drug type — the decline in marijuana seizures has resulted in a 68 percent overall decline in pounds seized per agent of all drugs since FY 2013.

Figure 4: Drug seizures per agent at and between ports of entry, FY 2013 to FY 2018

*Projected based on the first eleven months of the fiscal year.

Source: Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Border Patrol, “Staffing Statistics,” December 12, 2017; Fedscope, “Employment Cubes,” 2013-2018.

Marijuana may still dominate by weight, but other drugs — methamphetamine (meth), heroin, cocaine, and fentanyl — are much more valuable per pound. Estimating the value of drug seizures is difficult because drug prices vary widely throughout the United States and no government agency consistently estimates a national average. Moreover, CBP does not report the purity of the drugs it seizes, making it impossible to use outside estimates to value its seizures. However, while the agency does not report the collective value of all the drugs it seizes, it does regularly issue press releases that value individual seizures based on “the latest DEA statistics.”59 Aggregating this information provides the best estimate of how the agency values drug seizures.60

CBP reports the “street value” of a drug.61 Street prices inflate the absolute values of drug seizures because drugs obtain those values only after crossing the U.S. border and arriving at their destinations.62 However, the relative values between the different drugs and between different years are still useful for the purpose of comparison.63 The tables in the Appendix contain the valuations, seizure amounts, and number of agents and officers at ports of entry and between ports of entry.

Figure 5 presents the street value of drug seizures made by both Border Patrol agents between ports of entry and by CBP officers at ports of entry, again showing the average amount seized per agent. By value, marijuana has fallen from about 57 percent of seizures to just 18 percent from FY 2013 to FY 2018. The absolute value of marijuana seizures at and between ports of entry has declined 79 percent from $1.8 billion in FY 2013 to be on pace for just $380 million in FY 2018. Overall, the total value of all drug seizures per agent (or officer) has declined by 34 percent from FY 2013 to FY 2018. Marijuana legalization appears to have cut overall drug smuggling.

Figure 5: Value of drug seizures per agent at and between ports of entry by drug type,
FY 2013 to FY 2018*

*Projected based on the first 11 months of the fiscal year.

Source: Author’s calculations based on drug valuations and amounts from Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2018; Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Border Patrol, “Staffing Statistics,” December 12, 2017; Fedscope, “Employment Cubes,” 2013-2018.

All the decline in the value of drug seizures occurred between ports of entry. The value of all drug seizures between ports of entry fell by 70 percent on a per-agent basis from FY 2013 to FY 2018, while those at ports of entry increased by just 3 percent (Figure 6). In 2018, the drugs seized by OFO officers at ports of entry were three times more valuable than those seized by Border Patrol between ports of entry, while Border Patrol agents seized more valuable drugs in 2013. In 2018, the average inspector at a port of entry seized drugs valued at almost $71,000 compared to about $23,000 for Border Patrol agents between ports of entry. This fact significantly undermines the argument for more Border Patrol agents or a wall to interdict drug smuggling between ports of entry.

Figure 6: Value of drug seizures per agent by location of seizure, FY 2013 to 2018*

*Projected based on the first 11 months of the fiscal year.

Source: Author’s calculations based on drug valuations and amounts from Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2018; Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Border Patrol, “Staffing Statistics,” December 12, 2017; Fedscope, “Employment Cubes,” 2013-2018.

Given the focus of the political debate, it is important to note that drugs other than marijuana are almost entirely seized at ports of entry (Table 2). By value, CBP seized 87 percent of all hard drugs at ports of entry, not between ports of entry, in 2018. Stated another way, the hard drugs seized at ports of entry were seven times more valuable than those seized between ports of entry.

Table 2: Value of non-marijuana drug seizures by location of seizure (in millions of U.S. dollars)

*Projected based on the first 11 months of the fiscal year.

Source: Author’s calculations based on drug valuations and amounts from Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2018; Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018.

This fact becomes even more pronounced when considering that about half of all Border Patrol seizures of hard drugs in 2018 came at checkpoints in the interior of the United States.64 Drugs seized at checkpoints are already moving within the United States, primarily on major highways, where a border wall could do nothing. About two-thirds of Border Patrol seizures of heroin and meth and one-third of its seizures of fentanyl and cocaine came at checkpoints from April to August 2018 — the only months that the agency has published data on checkpoint seizures. Separating out these seizures reveals that hard drugs seized at ports of entry were 11 times more valuable than those seized between ports of entry or those seized at interior checkpoints from April to August 2018 — just 7 percent of the value of the non-marijuana seizures by OFO and Border Patrol occurred between ports of entry (Figure 7).

Figure 7: Percentage of total value of non-marijuana drug seizures by location, April to August 2018

Source: Author’s calculations based on drug valuations and amounts from Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2018; Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Customs and Border Protection, “U.S. Border Patrol Nationwide Checkpoint Drug Seizures in Pounds,” October 12, 2018.

During this time, each OFO officer seized at ports of entry slightly more pounds of marijuana, while confiscating 8 times more pounds of cocaine, 17 times more of fentanyl, 23 times more of methamphetamine, and 36 times more of heroin than each Border Patrol agent seized at the physical border — that is, at noncheckpoint locations between ports of entry (Table 3).65 In light of these facts, a surge of agents, technology, and infrastructure between ports of entry does not make sense as a strategy to control the flow of hard drugs into the United States.66

Table 3: Drug seizures by location of seizure (pounds per agent), April to August 2018

Source: Author’s calculations based on Customs and Border Protection, “Enforcement Statistics FY 2018,” August 31, 2018; Customs and Border Protection, “U.S. Border Patrol Nationwide Checkpoint Drug Seizures in Pounds,” October 12, 2018; Border Patrol, “Staffing Statistics,” December 12, 2017; Fedscope, “Employment Cubes,” 2013-2018.

Lessons for Immigration Policy

Since the imposition of strict numerical limits on legal immigration in the 1920s, federal efforts to prevent illegal immigration have been largely unsuccessful in limiting the illegal entry and residence of large numbers of immigrants, except when combined with large increases in lawful migration or a collapse in American demand for foreign workers, such as during the Great Depression. Today, Congress spends more money on the agencies responsible for federal enforcement of immigration laws than on all other federal law enforcement agencies combined — about $187 billion from 1986 to 2013.67 Since 2003, the federal government has deported about 1.7 million immigrants from the interior of the country and apprehended another 10 million at the borders.68

Just as legalization of marijuana has helped secure the border against illicit entry of marijuana, making it easier for immigrant workers to live and work legally in the United States has reduced the incentive of would-be illegal immigrants to cross the border. Over the last 70 years, the number of work visas is negatively correlated with illegal entries along the border.69 In other words, more work visas mean fewer illegal entries. The best available indicator of illegal entries is the number of apprehended border crossers. All else being equal, the more people who attempt to cross, the more people who are apprehended. Of course, increases in the number of agents could result in more apprehensions — just as more agents lead to more drug seizures — but as in the drug context, it is possible to control for the effect of increased enforcement by focusing on the number of apprehensions that the average agent makes.

Figure 8 presents the number of entries by lesser-skilled guest workers from 1949 to 2018 compared to the number of apprehensions per Border Patrol agent.70 The number of apprehensions spiked in the 1950s, but Congress responded by ramping up the number of admissions under the Bracero guest worker program, and illegal immigration almost disappeared. Unfortunately, Congress terminated the program in 1965, and the number of apprehensions per agent rose to a high of 528 in 1986. Starting in the mid-1990s, more guest workers began to enter under the H-2A and H-2B temporary worker programs, shooting up dramatically in the mid-2000s, while the number of apprehensions per agent collapsed.

Figure 8: Lesser-skilled guest worker admissions and apprehensions per Border Patrol agent*

*”Lesser-skilled” refers to Bracero admissions and H-2A and H-2B admissions; 2018 admissions estimated based on 2017.

Sources: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, “General Collection,” 1949-1995; U.S. Department of Homeland Security, “Yearbook of Immigration Statistics,” 1996-2017; Immigration and Naturalization Service, “History: Border Patrol,” 1985; TRAC Immigration, “Border Patrol Agents,” 2006; Border Patrol, “Staffing Statistics,” December 12, 2017.

Since 1949, apprehensions per Border Patrol agent were two-thirds lower in years with greater than 200,000 lesser-skilled guest worker admissions when compared with years with less than 200,000 admissions. During the same period, a 10 percent increase in guest workers was associated with an 8.8 percent decrease in apprehensions per agent. In recent years, the number of guest worker admissions increased twentyfold, from 26,014 in 1986 to 536,634 in 2017, while the average agent in 2017 apprehended 97 percent fewer people than in 1986.

Congress is already reducing illegal immigration by issuing more temporary work visas, thus reducing the incentive to cross illegally. Nonetheless, roughly 190,000 people still made it across the border illegally in 2015.71 Congress could address this flow by repealing visa regulations that limit lesser-skilled workers to seasonal jobs and exclude them from year-round or permanent positions. In addition, the government issues only 5,000 permanent residency visas for employment in lesser-skilled occupations. Lifting this quota and creating a work visa for year-round positions would help secure the border.

Today, in addition to people entering mainly for the purpose of employment, the Border Patrol also stops many asylum seekers who have left their home countries, primarily in Central America, as a result of political instability and the world’s highest rates of homicide.72 Among these, there are also large numbers of individuals apprehended by Border Patrol who are trying to reunite with their families in the United States.73 While marijuana flows lack these noneconomic drivers, wage differences are still the best predictor of where asylum seekers ultimately end up.74 This helps explain the consistency in the pattern of low levels of apprehensions during periods of high work-visa issuances.

Of course, the United States is already home to more than 11 million illegal immigrants, most of whom entered before the increase in guest worker admissions in the mid-2000s.75These workers have built their lives here, and while most probably would have availed themselves of a more permissive temporary worker program had it existed, a temporary worker program is no longer likely to result in a mass exodus. Rather, the United States should do with illegal immigrants what many states have done with illegal marijuana: legalize them — that is, provide an opportunity for them to obtain permanent residency.

Current law not only offers just 5,000 green cards to lower-skilled workers but also bans anyone who crossed the border illegally from applying for a green card, including family-sponsored ones.76 This prevents many illegal immigrants married to U.S. citizens, who would normally be entitled to permanent residency, from legalizing. Even if they return to their home countries, current law requires them to wait a decade before applying to be reunited with their American spouses — an unrealistic option. The only viable solution is a legalization program that allows them to get right with the law. Paired with more work visas, such a program could dramatically reduce illegal residence and allow for a regulated legal form of entry and residence.

In 1924, when Congress slashed legal immigration by roughly 80 percent, the Border Patrol immediately made the connection between the effects of alcohol prohibition and the effects of the legal immigration restrictions, labeling illegal immigration “bootlegging in aliens.”77In 1926, the commissioner of the Bureau of Immigration wrote to the secretary of labor that “as a consequence of more recent numerical limitation of immigration, the bootlegging of aliens … has grown to be an industry second in importance only to the bootlegging of liquor.”78 In other words, the government immediately recognized itself as the cause of both illegal immigration and alcohol smuggling. Alcohol legalization eliminated one of the trades, but the other has still not subsided. Marijuana legalization provides yet another model for how to address the illicit cross-border flow.

Conclusion

State-level marijuana legalization has significantly undercut marijuana smuggling. Based on Border Patrol seizures, smuggling has fallen 78 percent over just a five-year period. Because marijuana was the primary drug smuggled between ports of entry, where Border Patrol surveils, the value of the agency’s seizures overall — on a per-agent basis — has declined 70 percent. Now, smugglers seek to bring the most valuable drugs into the country through ports of entry rather than smuggling through the deserts of Arizona and New Mexico or across the Rio Grande. The average officer at ports of entry seized drugs valued at three times the amount of the average Border Patrol agent between ports of entry. A border wall or more Border Patrol agents would do nothing to stop most drug trafficking.

Marijuana legalization also provides a model for addressing illegal immigration. The legalization of marijuana eliminated the incentive to smuggle it across the border. In the same way, the legalization of migration and employment by foreign workers in the United States would eliminate the incentive to cross, live, and work illegally. The state-level legalization of marijuana has had a major effect on cross-border smuggling, implying that even modest reforms to legal immigration could have strong effects on illegal border crossers.

Appendix: Drug Seizure Amounts and Values

Table A.1: Office of Field Operations and Border Patrol drug seizures at and between ports of entry

*Valuations for 2018 reflect 2017 average valuations; all 2018 estimates based on first 11 months of the fiscal year.

**Insufficient data, uses 2017 average valuations.

Sources: Amounts — Customs and Border Protection, “CBP Enforcement Statistics FY2018,” August 28, 2018.

Values — Author’s calculation based on aggregating valuations from CBP press releases. Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2017.

Agents — Border Patrol, “Staffing Statistics,” December 12, 2017; Fedscope, “Employment Cubes,” 2013-2018.

Table A.2: Office of Field Operations drug seizures at ports of entry

*Valuations for 2018 reflect 2017 average valuations; all 2018 estimates based on first 11 months of the fiscal year.

**Insufficient data, uses 2017 average valuations.

Sources: Amounts — Customs and Border Protection, “CBP Enforcement Statistics FY2018,” August 28, 2018.

Values — Author’s calculation based on aggregating valuations from CBP press releases. Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2017.

Agents — Fedscope, “Employment Cubes,” 2013-2018.

Table A.3: Border Patrol drug seizures between ports of entry

*Valuations for 2018 reflect 2017 average valuations; all 2018 estimates based on first 11 months of the fiscal year.

Sources: Amounts — Customs and Border Protection, “CBP Enforcement Statistics FY2018,” August 28, 2018.

Values — Author’s calculation based on aggregating valuations from CBP press releases. Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2017.

Agents — Border Patrol, “Staffing Statistics,” December 12, 2017.

Note: In 2017, CBP valued fentanyl seized at about $29,000 per pound, while valuing heroin about $21,000 per pound.79CBP describes its valuations as the “street value” of the drugs “based on the latest DEA statistics.”80 According to valuations from the DEA cited in news reports and elsewhere, smugglers can buy heroin in Colombia for about $2,721 per pure pound and sell it wholesale in the United States for about $36,287, while fentanyl can be bought in China for about $2,267 per pure pound and cut into 7 to 11 pounds — each sold for as much as a pound of heroin ($36,287) for a total value of about $725,749 per pure pound.81 Thus, the value of a pure pound of fentanyl is, according to these reports, about 20 times more valuable than heroin, while CBP’s valuations show that their seized fentanyl is only slightly more valuable than heroin. Only CBP knows the purity of the fentanyl that it seizes, and it would be surprising if CBP undervalues its own fentanyl seizures, but if it does — and the actual value of CBP’s fentanyl seizures is about 20 times more than heroin per pound — the total value of drug seizures at ports of entry since 2013 would have increased 50 percent, rather than 8 percent; the total value of drug seizures between ports of entry would have declined 65 percent, rather than 73 percent; and the total value of all drugs both at and between ports of entry would have declined 11 percent, rather than 35 percent. Overall, in this counterfactual, ports of entry would account for 79 percent of the value of all drug seizures rather than 78 percent. Thus, the general conclusions in this paper — that ports of entry are now the dominant means of entry for drugs and that marijuana legalization reduced the overall value of drug flows — still hold, even if CBP is massively undervaluing its fentanyl seizures.

NOTES

1 Drug Enforcement Administration, “Drug Scheduling,” https://www.dea.gov/drug-scheduling.

2 Louisa Degenhardt et al., “Toward a Global View of Alcohol, Tobacco, Cannabis, and Cocaine Use: Findings from the WHO World Mental Health Surveys,” PLoS Medicine 5, no. 7 (2008): e141, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0050141.

3 Statistic on marijuana use from Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, “Results from the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed Tables,” September 7, 2017, https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/NSDUH-DetTabs-2016/NSDUH-DetTabs-2016.pdf. Statistic on value from The Arcview Group, “New Report: Marijuana Stores as Profitable as Starbucks,” November 16, 2017, https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2017/11/16/1194273/0/en/NEW-REPORTMarijuana-Stores-as-Profitable-as-Starbucks.html.

4 Melia Robinson, “Here’s Where You Can Legally Smoke Weed in 2018,” Business Insider, December 31, 2017.

5 Kathleen Gray, “Legal Marijuana in Michigan: What You Need to Know,” Detroit Free Press, November 7, 2018.

6 National Drug Intelligence Center, “Domestic Cannabis Cultivation Assessment 2009-Primary Foreign Source Countries for Marijuana,” U.S. Department of Justice, July 2009, https://www.justice.gov/archive/ndic/pubs37/37035/foreign.htm.

7 Brady Dennis, “Obama Administration Will Not Block State Marijuana Laws If Distribution Is Regulated,” Washington Post, August 29, 2013.

8 Jacob Sullum, “Did Jeff Sessions’s Marijuana Memo Restore the Rule of Law?,” Reason, January 5, 2018.

9 U.S. Department of Justice, “U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer Issues Statement Regarding Marijuana Prosecutions in Colorado,” January 4, 2018, https://www.justice.gov/usao-co/pr/us-attorney-bob-troyer-issues-statement-regarding-marijuana-prosecutions-colorado; and Wendy Fry, “San Diego U.S. Attorney Backs Sessions’s Pot Enforcement Policy,” NBC 7 San Diego, January 4, 2018.

10 Christopher Ingraham, “White House Hints at ‘Greater Enforcement’ of Federal Marijuana Ban in States Where It’s Legal,” Washington Post, February 23, 2017; and Dominic Holden, “Inside the Trump Administration’s Secret War on Weed,” BuzzFeed, August 29, 2018.

11 Office on Drugs and Crime, 2006 World Drug Report, vol. 1 (Vienna: United Nations, 2007), p. 175, https://www.unodc.org/pdf/WDR_2006/wdr2006_volume1.pdf.

12 Beau Kilmer et al., “Reducing Drug Trafficking Revenues and Violence in Mexico,” RAND Corporation, October 12, 2010.

13 DEA, “2013 National Drug Threat Assessment Summary,” U.S. Department of Justice, November 2013, https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2018-07/DIR-017-13%20NDTA%20Summary%20final.pdf.

14 U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Volume I: Drug and Chemical Control (March 2014), https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/222881.pdf.

15 Marijuana Policy Group, “Market Size and Demand for Marijuana in Colorado, 2017 Market Update,” University of Colorado, Boulder, Leeds School of Business, August 2018, p. 3, https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/sites/default/files/MED%20Demand%20and%20Market%20%20Study%20%20082018.pdf.

16 Tom Wainwright, Narconomics: How to Run a Drug Cartel (New York: PublicAffairs, 2017), p. 221.

17 Marijuana Policy Group, “Market Size and Demand for Marijuana,” p. 3.

18 DEA, “2017 National Drug Threat Assessment,” U.S. Department of Justice, October 2017,https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2018-07/DIR-040-17_2017-NDTA.pdf; Tom McGhee, “Massive Marijuana Bust Dismantles Illegal Trafficking Ring in Denver Metro Area,” Denver Post, June 28, 2017; and John Ingold, “Supreme Court Denies Oklahoma and Nebraska Challenge to Colorado Pot,” Denver Post, March 21, 2016.

19 Instituto Mexicano para la Competitividad, “Possible Impact of the Legalization of Marijuana in the United States,” 2012, http://imco.org.mx/seguridad/posible_impacto_de_la_legalizacion_de_la_marihuana_en_estados_unidos/.

20 Andrea Crossan, “Loosened U.S. Pot Laws Have Sent Mexican Weed Prices Plunging,” PRI, January 5, 2016; and John Burnett, “Legal Pot in the U.S. May Be Undercutting Mexican Marijuana,” NPR, December 1, 2014.

21 DEA, “2017 National Drug Threat Assessment.”

22 CBP Office of Intelligence, “Drug Smuggling at the Border,” U.S. Department of Homeland Security, October 18, 2017, http://www.nascsa.org/Conference2017/presentations/pena.pdf.

23 Stephen Dinan, “Tunnels Become Human Smuggling Pathways across Border While Drug Transfers Go Airborne,” Washington Times, August 27, 2017.

24 Bureau of Immigration, “Annual Report of the Commissioner of Immigration to the Secretary of Labor: Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 1925,” U.S. Department of Labor, 1925, available at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, “General Collection,” https://www.uscis.gov/history-and-genealogy/historical-library/our-collection/general-collection.

25 Bureau of Immigration reports available at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, “General Collection,” https://www.uscis.gov/history-and-genealogy/historical-library/our-collection/general-collection.

26 Immigration and Naturalization Service, “Annual Report for the Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 1951,” U.S. Department of Justice, 1951, available at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, “General Collection,” https://www.uscis.gov/history-and-genealogy/historical-library/our-collection/general-collection.

27 Isaac Campos, Home Grown (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2012), p. 82.

28 Marihuana Tax Act of 1937, Pub.L. 75-238, 50 Stat. 551.

29 Office of Inspector General, “DHS Drug Interdiction Efforts Need Improvement,” U.S. Department of Homeland Security, OIG-17-09, November 8, 2016, https://www.oig.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/assets/2017/OIG-17-09-Nov16.pdf.

30 David Bier, “GOP Bill Spends More on Border Patrol in 5 Years Than It Has Spent in 5 Decades,” Cato at Liberty (blog), January 24, 2018, https://www.cato.org/blog/gop-bill-spends-more-border-patrol-5-years-it-has-spent-5-decades.

31 Border Patrol, “Border Patrol Agent Nationwide Staffing by Fiscal Year,” 2017, https://www.cbp.gov/sites/default/files/assets/documents/2017-Dec/BP%20Staffing%20FY1992-FY2017.pdf.

32 Air and Marine Operations, “Vision 2025,” Customs and Border Protection, November 16, 2016, https://www.cbp.gov/document/publications/air-and-marine-operations-vision-2025.

33 U.S. Department of Homeland Security, “Border Security in the 21st Century,” July 13, 2015, https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1009_s1_border_slide_508.pdf.

34 2017 canine data from Damian Montes, director CPB canine program, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Testimony before the Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency of the House Committee on Homeland Security, 115th Cong., 1st sess., May 18, 2017, http://docs.house.gov/meetings/HM/HM09/20170518/105943/HHRG-115-HM09-Wstate-MontesD-20170518.pdf. 2007 canine data from Office of Inspector General, “A Review of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Procurement of Untrained Canines,” U.S. Department of Homeland Security, OIG-08-46, April 2008, https://www.oig.dhs.gov/assets/Mgmt/OIG_08-46_Apr08.pdf.

35 Government Accountability Office, “DHS Surveillance Technology Unmanned Aerial Systems and Other Assets,” GAO-16-671T, May 24, 2016, https://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-16-671T. For a description of the technology employed, see Todd Owen et al., “Deter, Detect, and Interdict: Technology’s Role in Securing the Border,” Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security of the House Committee on Homeland Security, 115th Cong., 1st sess., July 25, 2017, https://www.dhs.gov/news/2017/07/25/written-testimony-cbp-house-homeland-security-subcommittee-border-and-maritime.

36 Office of Inspector General, “DHS Drug Interdiction Efforts Need Improvement.”

37 Julia Edwards Ainsley, “Exclusive: Trump Border ‘Wall’ to Cost $21.6 Billion, Take 3.5 Years to Build: Internal Report,” Reuters, February 9, 2017.

38 Office of the President of the United States, “2019 Budget Fact Sheet: Stronger Border Security,” https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/FY19-Budget-Fact-Sheet_Border-Security.pdf.

39 Dan Mangan, “President Trump Vows to ‘Liberate’ United States from Opioid Epidemic: ‘Failure Is Not an Option,’” CNBC, March 19, 2018.

40 Government Accountability Office, “Issues Related to Agent Deployment Strategy and Immigration Checkpoints,” GAO-18-50, November 2017, p. 72, https://www.gao.gov/assets/690/688201.pdf.

41 The standard deviation for the prelegalization period was 9.3 pounds per agent.

42 The old Immigration and Naturalization Service statistics failed to break down the figures between Border Patrol and immigration inspectors at ports of entry, but because marijuana is smuggled overwhelmingly between ports of entry, we can infer that the overall pattern was the same in the 1990s. U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Yearbook of Immigration Statistics, https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/Yearbook_Immigration_Statistics_2003.pdf.

43 On the flip side, a decline in agent effectiveness during the ramp-up in agents from 2004 to 2009, to the extent that there was such a decline, would have disguised an increase in smuggling during that time.

44 Douglas S. Massey and Karen A. Pren, “Unintended Consequences of U.S. Immigration Policy: Explaining the Post-1965 Surge from Latin America,” Population and Development Review 38, no.1 (2012): 1-29.

45 DHS used survey data on the share of apprehended border crossers who return to their home country without making a new entry attempt to focus on the population that would attempt to enter again. It then subtracted the number who were apprehended while making their repeat entry from the estimate of those who would make a repeat attempt. The success rate thus determined for formerly apprehended immigrants enabled DHS to estimate the number of successful entries for all border crossers.

46 DEA, “2017 National Drug Threat Assessment.”

47 Carla Argueta, “Border Security: Immigration Enforcement between Ports of Entry,” Congressional Research Service, April 19, 2016, https://fas.org/sgp/crs/homesec/R42138.pdf.

48 Office of Inspector General, “Independent Review of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Reporting of FY 2007 Drug Control Performance Summary,” U.S. Department of Homeland Security, April 2008, https://www.oig.dhs.gov/assets/Mgmt/OIG_08-40_Apr08.pdf; Office of Inspector General, “Independent Review of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Reporting of FY 2010 Drug Control Performance Summary Report,” U.S. Department of Homeland Security, January 2011, https://www.oig.dhs.gov/assets/Mgmt/OIG_11-36_Jan11.pdf; U.S. Border Patrol, “Stats and Summaries-Sector Profile,” https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/media-resources/stats?title=sector+profile; Customs and Border Protection, “CBP Enforcement Statistics FY2018,”https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/stats/cbp-enforcement-statistics; and Customs and Border Protection, “Border Patrol Agent Nationwide Staffing by Fiscal Year,” 2017.

49 Customs and Border Protection, “CBP Enforcement Statistics FY2018.”

50 Customs and Border Protection, “CBP Enforcement Statistics FY2018.”

51 2012 figure from Customs and Border Protection, “Air and Marine: A Rich and Varied History of Service,” March 14, 2014, https://www.cbp.gov/border-security/air-sea/air-and-marine-rich-and-varied-history-service. 2013 figure estimated based on Randolph Alles, “What Does a Secure Maritime Border Look Like?” House Committee on Homeland Security, November 19, 2013, https://www.dhs.gov/news/2013/11/19/written-testimony-cbp-house-homeland-security-subcommittee-border-and-maritime. 2014 figure from Randolph Alles, “Securing the Maritime Border: The Future of CBP Air and Marine,” House Committee on Homeland Security, July 14, 2015, https://www.dhs.gov/news/2015/07/14/written-testimony-cbp-house-homeland-security-subcommittee-border-and-maritime. 2015 figure from Air and Marine Operations, “Annual Review 2015,” Customs and Border Protection, https://www.cbp.gov/sites/default/files/assets/documents/2016-Dec/Annual_Review_FINAL_2015.pdf. 2016 figure from Customs and Border Protection, “CBP’s Air and Marine Operations, Interagency Partners Thwart Attempts to Smuggle 4,659 Pounds of Cocaine,” July 6, 2017, https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/local-media-release/cbp-s-air-and-marine-operations-interagency-partners-thwart-attempts. 2017 figure from Customs and Border Protection, “Air and Marine Operations: Fact Sheet,” https://www.cbp.gov/sites/default/files/assets/documents/2017-Dec/FS_2018_AMO_Fact%20Sheet.pdf.

52 U.S. Department of State, “Narcotics Control Reports,” https://www.state.gov/j/inl/rls/nrcrpt/index.htm. 2017 figure from U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Volume I: Drug and Chemical Control (March 2018), https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/278759.pdf. 2016 figure from U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Volume I: Drug and Chemical Control (March 2017), https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/268025.pdf. 2015 figure from U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Volume I: Drug and Chemical Control (March 2016), https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/268025.pdf. 2014 figure from U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Volume I: Drug and Chemical Control (March 2015), https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/253655.pdf. 2013 figure from U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Volume I: Drug and Chemical Control (March 2014), https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/222881.pdf. 2012 figure from U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Volume I: Drug and Chemical Control (March 2013), https://2009-2017.state.gov/documents/organization/204265.pdf.

53 This figure counts only states where marijuana legalization included non-low-THC, high-CBD strains and smokable varieties. User statistics come from NORML, “Medical Marijuana,” http://norml.org/legal/medical-marijuana-2. See also National Conference of State Legislatures, “State Medical Marijuana Laws,” http://www.ncsl.org/research/health/state-medical-marijuanalaws.aspx.

54 Based on a constant valuation of $56.1 billion for the overall marijuana market, as given by The Arcview Group, “New Report: Marijuana Stores as Profitable as Starbucks,” November 16, 2017. 2013-2014 figures from The Arcview Group, “New Report: Legal Marijuana Is the Fastest Growing Industry in the U.S.-74% Growth in 2014,” January 25, 2015. 2015 figure from Arcview Market Research, “The State of Legal Marijuana Markets, 4th Edition,” https://www.amazon.com/State-Legal-Marijuana-Markets-4th/dp/0991366522. 2016 figure from The Arcview Group, “New Report: Marijuana Stores as Profitable as Starbucks,” November 16, 2017. 2017 figure from Jeremy Berke, “The Legal Marijuana Market Is Exploding-It’ll Hit Almost $10 Billion in Sales This Year,” Business Insider, December 8, 2017.

55 Author’s calculation based on aggregating valuations from CBP press releases. See Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2017, https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/local-media-release.

56 See appendix for values. Author’s calculation based on aggregating valuations from CBP press releases. See Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2012-2017.

57 Note that since 2013, the number of officers at ports of entry (22,500) has averaged roughly about the same level as the number of Border Patrol agents (20,200).

58 Customs and Border Protection, “CBP Enforcement Statistics FY2018.”

59 Customs and Border Protection, “Heroin Found in Seat Cushion by CBP at JFK,” April 3, 2015, https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/local-media-release/heroin-found-seat-cushion-cbp-jfk.

60 The trends in CBP valuations appear to correlate with the DEA’s estimates of the value of each drug’s price per pure gram. See DEA, “2017 National Drug Threat Assessment,” https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2018-07/DIR-040-17_2017-NDTA.pdf.

61 Customs and Border Protection, “Heroin Found in Seat Cushion By CBP at JFK.”

62 Wainwright, Narconomics, pp. 4-5.

63 In 2017, CBP valued the average pound of marijuana at $466; of meth at $8,999 per pound; of cocaine at $13,177 per pound; of heroin at $20,868 per pound; and of fentanyl at $28,835 per pound. (See appendix for full numbers for 2013-2017; see also the note on fentanyl values at the end of the appendix.) Author’s calculation based on aggregating valuations from CBP press releases. See Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2013-2017.

64 Customs and Border Protection, “U.S. Border Patrol Nationwide Checkpoint Drug Seizures in Pounds,” U.S. Department of Homeland Security, September 10, 2018, https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/stats/cbp-enforcement-statistics/usbp-drug-seizures-sector.

65 The number of Border Patrol agents was taken to be 9.4 percent of the total, on the basis of the share of agent hours devoted to checkpoints from FY 2013 to FY 2016. See Government Accountability Office, “Issues Related to Agent Deployment Strategy and Immigration Checkpoints,” GAO-18-50, November 2017, p. 29.

66 The disparity may be even larger than these numbers suggest, since nearly 40 percent of Border Patrol drug seizures occur more than 20 miles from the border-at least, they did in FY 2016. See Government Accountability Office, “Issues Related to Agent Deployment Strategy and Immigration Checkpoints,” GAO-18-50, November 2017, p. 72.

67 The agencies also engage in other activities, including drug and customs enforcement. See Doris Meissner et al., “Immigration Enforcement in the United States: The Rise of a Formidable Machinery,” Migration Policy Institute, January 2013, https://www.migrationpolicy.org/research/immigration-enforcement-united-states-rise-formidable-machinery.

68 Border Patrol, “Nationwide Illegal Alien Apprehensions, Fiscal Years 1925-2017,” https://www.cbp.gov/sites/default/files/assets/documents/2017-Dec/BP%20Total%20Apps%20FY1925-FY2017.pdf; Marc R. Rosenblum and Kristen McCabe, “Deportation and Discretion: Reviewing the Record and Options for Change,” Migration Policy Institute, October 2014, https://www.migrationpolicy.org/research/deportation-and-discretion-reviewing-record-and-options-change; and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, “Fiscal Year 2017 ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations Report,” https://www.ice.gov/sites/default/files/documents/Report/2017/iceEndOfYearFY2017.pdf.

69 Alex Nowrasteh, “Guest Worker Visas Can Halt Illegal Immigration,” Cato at Liberty(blog), May 5, 2014, https://www.cato.org/blog/guest-worker-visas-can-halt-illegal-immigration.

70 Donald Coppock, “History-Border Patrol,” Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1986, https://object.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/wp-content/uploads/borderpatrolstaffing25_85.pdf; TRACImmigration, “Border Patrol Agents: Southern vs. Northern Border,” Syracuse University, http://trac.syr.edu/immigration/reports/143/include/rep143table2.html; Customs and Border Protection, “Border Patrol Agent Nationwide Staffing by Fiscal Year,” 2017; Border Patrol, “Nationwide Illegal Alien Apprehensions Fiscal Years 1925-2017”; U.S. Department of Homeland Security, “Yearbook of Immigration Statistics”; U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, “General Collection-Annual Reports,” August 9, 2017.

71 For 2014 and 2015, CBP reported an average of 190,000 people per year made it across the border. See Tribune News Services, “Barely Half of Illegal Border Crossers Caught, According to Homeland Security Report,” Chicago Tribune, October 7, 2016.

72 David Bier, “Three Trends to Put Trump’s Anti-Immigration Executive Orders in Context,” Cato at Liberty (blog), January 27, 2017, https://www.cato.org/blog/three-trends-put-trumps-anti-immigration-executive-orders-context.

73 Human Rights Watch, “Border Enforcement Policies Ensnare Parents of U.S. Citizen Children,” January 8, 2015.

74 Michael Clemens, “Violence, Development and Migration Waves: Evidence from Central American Child Migrant Apprehensions,” IZA Discussion Paper No. 10928, August 31, 2017, https://www.cgdev.org/sites/default/files/violence-development-and-migration-waves-evidence-central-american-child-migrant.pdf.

75 Jeffrey Passel and D’Vera Cohn, “Overall Number of U.S. Unauthorized Immigrants Holds Steady Since 2009,” Pew Research Center, September 20, 2016.

76 “Allocation of Immigrant Visas,” 8 U.S.C. § 1153(b)(3)(A)(iii); and “Inadmissible Aliens,” 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(6).

77 As quoted in David J. Bier, “Does America Ban Immigration?,” Foundation for Economic Education, July 31, 2015, https://fee.org/articles/does-america-ban-immigration/.

78 Bureau of Immigration, “Annual Report of the Commissioner General of Immigration to the Secretary of Labor Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 2017,” U.S. Department of Labor, available at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, “General Collection-Annual Reports,” https://www.uscis.gov/history-and-genealogy/historical-library/our-collection/general-collection

79 Author’s calculation based on aggregating valuations from CBP press releases. See Customs and Border Protection, “Local Media Releases,” 2012-2017.

80 Customs and Border Protection, “Heroin Found in Seat Cushion by CBP at JFK,” April 3, 2015; and Customs and Border Protection, “CBP in San Diego and Imperial Valley Seizes $8.3 Million in Narcotics,” November 15, 2017.

81 Azam Ahmed, “Drug That Killed Prince Is Making Mexican Cartels Richer, U.S. Says,” New York Times, June 9, 2016..