Reason - It is not easy to maintain a society's commitment to freedom and limited government. The social consensus on which these values are based requires constant work. And many conservative intellectuals fear that large-scale immigration, especially from poor and unfree countries, makes this job much harder because immigrants bring with them the attitudes and beliefs of their home country that have an impact on their destination countries.
To be sure, these new studies are preliminary and don't decisively settle the issue. Much research remains to be done. However, they should make us more skeptical of those who fear that increased, or even unrestricted, migration would necessarily erode the economic freedom that makes destination countries prosperous.
Benjamin Powell is a senior fellow with the Independent Institute, Oakland, Calif., and director of the Free Market Institute and a professor of economics in the Rawls College of Business Administration at Texas Tech University. He's also the editor of the book, The Economics of Immigration.