Apologizes for Anti-Immigrant Infographic

By Jamilah King Jun 18, 2010

Looks like popular personal finance website is second-guessing its newfound political stance against immigration. The company’s been under fire since posting a blatantly anti-immigrant infographic on its website Wednesday called "The Economic Impact of Immigration." This morning, it removed the post and apologized to readers. Megan McArdle chimed in at The Atlantic that the post cited several shady, anti-immigrantion sources, and Ezra Klein further pointed out how the post was riddled with economic fallacies. One of the most prominently used sources was Vdare, said by the Washington Post to be best known for publishing by white "nationals." Among the post’s most outrageous claims: * About 43 percent of Food Stamps in the United States go to "illegal aliens." * Along with about 41 percent of unemployment checks. * Undocumented immigrants cost Arizona taxpayers $2.7 billion. The infographic also included visuals that suggested Mexican immigrants had jobs at astronomically higher rates than immigrants from other countries, a not so subtle nod to implicate itself in the debate over SB 1070. Both McArdle and Klein handily turned those stats on their heads, but the post’s deeply problematic intention to connect an imagined political reality to individual users’ wallets remains. In its apology posted earlier today, MintLife editor Lee Sherman apologized, saying that the post "went too far" and "cited polarized sources." Read the full apology after the jump.

At MintLife, our mission is to give users and visitors the financial information they need to save and do more with their money. Topics range from personal finance advice, to analysis of macroeconomic trends and the fiscal impacts of news of the day. We publish content from a variety of contributors and sources, and the opinions expressed don’t necessarily reflect those of or of Intuit. It’s true that the tone is often provocative, seeking to engage readers in dialogue around important topics, but the recent blog post “The Economic Impact of Immigration” went too far, cited polarized sources and did not receive the editorial judgment and oversight it deserved. We regret it. It is completely unacceptable and won’t happen again. Our intention was not to further the agenda of any of the sources from which data was pulled, and the post has been removed.

But this isn’t the first time Mint’s taken a conservative stance in the immigration debate. Back in May, the same author, Ross Crocks, posted a slightly more moderate inforgraphic on the costs of boycotting Arizona, citing that it would "hit Arizona residents hard" and amount to about $2, 603 per person.