New Report: U.S. Immigrant Population Hits Record 44 Million

A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies shows that the United States immigrant population recently reached a record high of 44 million.

In 2016, there were 43.7 million legal and illegal immigrants in the U.S., which made up 13.5 percent of the total population. Doing the math, that is more than one out of every eight residents.

Reports by the Pew Research show that around 11 million people are currently undocumented immigrants in the United States, with 42 percent overstaying on their visas. The year 2016 also marked the largest percentage of immigrants since 1910, a year in history that is significant for being the third major wave of migration.

Surprisingly, over the past 50 years, the United States has added nearly 120 million people, according the data by the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS).

These new immigration numbers don’t include the American-born children of immigrants. If you factor the 16.6 million of them in, it would equate to 60.4 million people in total, making immigrants and their children one out of every five people.

“The enormous number of immigrants already in the country coupled with the settlement of well over a million newcomers each year has a profound impact on American society, including on workers, schools, infrastructure, hospitals and the environment,” said Steven Camarota, CIS director of research and co-author of the report.

Mexico is the origin of the most immigrants to the United States, both legally and illegally, but the amount of immigrants coming from the nation are not increasing as rapidly in the past. Interestingly, the four most populated states in the U.S. seeing the largest increases in immigrant residents are California, Texas, Florida and New York.

From 2010 to 2016, the states which saw the largest percentage increases in their immigrant populations were sort of surprising, due to their historical immigrant populations. Those states were North Dakota (up 48 percent), West Virginia (up 41 percent), South Dakota (up 39 percent) and Delaware (up 24 percent).  

Looking at a more global perspective, the regions that saw the largest increases of immigrants to the U.S. were East Asia (up 892,209), South Asia (up 889,878) and the Caribbean (up 554,903). The countries which saw the largest increase in number of immigrants from 2010 to 2016 was Saudi Arabia (122 percent), Nepal (86 percent) then Afghanistan (74 percent).

Will Trump curb immigration numbers?

It is not yet known if President Trump will significantly change trends in immigration, especially illegal immigration, which was one of his top campaign priorities, along with the proposed border wall. In the meantime, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has been stepping up their migration enforcement.

Here is one tweet about immigration throughout his presidential campaign:

“Concerns about the explosion of immigration — especially of illegals — helped Donald Trump win the presidency and has prompted his administration to crack down on illegal immigration and refugees,” the Washington Examiner reported.

So far, reports have illegal border crossings down this year, but most illegals are still entering the United States through the border states of Texas, California, Arizona and New Mexico.

Social media divided on topic of immigration

The new study definitely has people talking about immigration throughout the country. Some think that more immigration is necessary and a positive thing for the country, while others disagree by saying we already have enough people.

What are your thoughts on this new immigration report and immigration in general? Let us know in the comments!

— PJ Amirata

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