On the impact of local economies on sub-federal immigration laws in the U.S. and how these laws affect agricultural labor force
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A surge of sub-federal immigration laws have been enacted since the late 2000s. Most of previous studies have focused on how these laws affect the local economy. This study examines how the local economy and demographic composition affect whether local governments sign immigration laws. Furthermore, given labor shortages in agriculture due to immigration laws, we examine how sub-federal immigration laws affect the number of H-2A visa applications, which is a tool for bringing foreign seasonal agricultural workers in the U.S. We find that per capita unemployment compensation insurance, per capita total number of jobs, and the share of Hispanic male population to total male population within a county are positively associated with whether a local government chooses to sign immigration laws. In addition, we find that the enactment of state-wide immigration laws decrease H-2A visa applications.