Since the year 2000, the total immigrant population in the United States has jumped by an estimated 8 million people, according to a new report from the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS). Taking into account the U.S.-born children of these 43 million foreign-born people, the nation’s immigrant population jumps to 60 million– nearly 20 percent of the country’s total population.
The numbers estimate, based on a CIS review of the U.S. Census Bureau data released in September from the 2016 American Community Survey (ACS), “shows uneven growth in the immigrant population in the last year,” according to the report. Significant growth in both documented and undocumented immigration stems largely from Middle Eastern, Latin American countries other than Mexico, Asian and Sub-Saharan African countries. At the same time, immigration rates from Mexico, Europe and Canada either remained static or declined.
The CIS report also contends the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) estimates the Census Bureau’s numbers miss 1.9 million immigrants in the survey. Taking the number of missed immigrants into account, according to the conservative think tank, brings the number of adult foreign-born nationals in the United States to 45.6 million. CIS officials establish the immigrant population at more than 60 million with the addition of immigrant children and without distinction between documented and undocumented immigrants.
Among other key CIS findings:
- Immigrants comprised 13.5 percent– one out of eight– U.S. residents in 2016. The rate represents the highest percentage in more than 100 years. This compares to immigrant representation of only one in every 16 U.S. residents in 1980.
- Immigrants settling in the United States between 2010 and 2016 totaled 8.1 million. The total in new arrivals is offset by an estimated 300,000 immigrants who return to their native countries annually along with a natural mortality rate of around 300,000. With the offsets, immigrant population growth was 3.8 million in those years.
- Immigrants with U.S.-born minor children totaled more than 16.6 million people.
- Immigrants from Mexico represent the largest foreign-born population in the nation in 2016. Mexican nationals represent 1.1 million immigrants to the U.S. between 2010 and 2016– the largest foreign born population in the country.
The CIS immigration report includes those individuals who were not U.S. citizens at birth. The report numbers also includes naturalized citizens, legal permanent residents– green card holders–, temporary workers and foreign students as well as undocumented.