NEW YORK, N.Y. – Donald Trump’s lightning-rod proposals to deport illegal immigrants and temporarily ban Muslims from entering the United States could cost New York state more than $800 million and New York City over 340,000 jobs, according to an analysis commissioned by the majority-Democratic New York City Council.
City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, a Democrat and Hillary Clinton supporter, unveiled the findings in a speech Wednesday, saying “the city’s economy would shrink because of Donald Trump.”
“While Donald Trump could watch the ruin from high atop his tacky towers, his plans would have a devastating impact on real people, and would do great harm to the economy of our city,” Mark-Viverito said. “The closer we look, the more it becomes apparent that — shockingly — a con man and reality TV personality masquerading as a policy maker would drive New York’s economy into a ditch.”
A Trump campaign spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The report was put together by members of the City Council’s finance team, the same economists who help craft the city’s budget. The council is overwhelmingly Democratic, but Mark-Viverito denied to reporters that the study was partisan, saying it was normal for the council to examine national proposals that would impact the city’s economy.
But Mark-Viverito, one of the nation’s most prominent politicians of Puerto Rican descent, has become an effective surrogate for Clinton, particularly on immigration issues. Her role for the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee only grew when her counterpart in New York City government, Mayor Bill de Blasio, initially waffled in supporting Clinton.
On Wednesday, Mark-Viverito unleashed her harshest criticism to date of Trump in a speech before the high-profile Association for a Better New York business group.
She said the analysis found that the policies of the presumptive Republican presidential nominee could cost the city more jobs than the 2001 and 2008 recessions, result in “mass deportations that would be a Trump-branded reign of terror” and noted that workers in New York City who were born in Muslim-majority countries contribute $14.2 billion annually to the local economy.
“The numbers tell one story: Donald Trump’s racist fear-mongering proposals would hurt New York’s economy,” Mark-Viverito said, before quoting the smash Broadway musical “Hamilton” to stress the importance of immigrants to the city. “Immigrants, they get the job done!”
Trump’s immigration proposals have come under fire from many Democrats. He launched his campaign last summer with a speech that accused some immigrants from Mexico of being rapists and bringing drugs into the country while pledging to fortify the nation’s southern border while deporting immigrants in the U.S. without legal documentation.
He later vowed to temporarily bar the world’s more than 1.5 billion foreign Muslims from entering the U.S., a position from which he recently backed away.