According to recent a Census Bureau report, one out of every five married couples in the U.S. has a spouse who was born in a different country. Western and mid-Atlantic states were reported to have the highest rate of foreign spouses. This number is expected to grow as more foreigners make their way into U.S.
“As the immigrant population has grown, so has the chance that a native-born person will meet and marry a foreign-born spouse,” Elizabeth Grieco, chief of the Census Bureau’s Foreign-Born Population Branch, said in a statement.
Sixty-one percent of foreign spouses have obtained U.S. citizenship while 39 percent are non-citizens.
USA Today noted that immigration trends have led to the increase in foreign residents. While the national average for couples with at least one foreign-born person is 7.4 percent, Nevada, District of Columbia, Hawaii and California have a significantly higher percentage. In those states, a minimum of 12 percent of all married couples have at least one foreigner. South Dakota, West Virginia and Mississippi were among the states with the lowest percentage of foreign-born spouses.
As many foreigners successfully enter the country, settle down and meet life partners, some citizens are having a tougher time. A couple in Texas faces a rough predicament as they recently married but the wife was not able to enter the country.
Edgar Falcon, a resident of Texas, married Maricruz Valtierra earlier in August. Valtierra is dealing with a lifetime ban in the U.S. because of complications when she tried to enter the country at the age of 16.
“The only option I have is exile, to choose between the love of my wife and the love for my country,” Falcon told The Associated Press.
Falcon and many others in his position are urging their Texas representatives in Congress to propose legislation that solves the problems U.S. citizens are having with immigration reform.