Before we get to Paul Bedard’s piece in Thursday’s Washington Examiner, it’s important to note that the study to which he refers was done by the Center for Immigration Studies, which the Southern Poverty Law Center includes on its “Hatewatch” list as a nativist and anti-immigrant think tank.

The SPLC would prefer that reporters obtain their numbers from the well known scholars at Washington’s Immigration Policy Center, a policy arm operating under George Soros’ Open Society Foundations.

That said, Bedard reports that, according to some number crunching by Center for Immigration Studies, even a border wall built at the highest estimate of $16 billion, it could still save that amount in the first three years, even if it managed to block only half of the illegal crossings that occur each year.

Steven A. Camarota, director of research for CIS, says that, according to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the taxes paid versus services used over a lifetime drain $74,722 per illegal — $94,391 if decedents are included.

An unrelated report published in the New York Times suggests that what some fear is a spike in ICE detentions following the inauguration is actually business as usual.

While ICE reported 680 arrests in the previous week, immigration officials made 35,094 arrests in fiscal 2009, or 675 each week.