One In Seven: U.S. Immigrant Population Hits Its Highest Share in 107 Years

Brittany M. Hughes | September 14, 2018
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One in seven people living in the United States are either immigrants or illegal aliens, according to a new report published by the Center for Immigration Studies Friday.

CIS noted that based on the most recent data available from the U.S. Census, foreign-born persons – both legal immigrants and illegal aliens – now make up 13.7 percent of the entire U.S. population, the highest percentage since 1910.

Numerically, the U.S. is now home to the highest number of foreign-born persons in the country’s history, with nearly 45 million people having come to the U.S. from another country. CIS notes the surging number of immigrants is largely due to a recent boom over the past two decades, noting that “the 9.5 million new arrivals since 2010 roughly equals the entire immigrant population in 1970.” In fact, the total immigrant population has risen about 800,000 since 2016, 4.6 million since 2010, and 13.4 million since 2000.

The data shows most of this growth coming from Central America, sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. Mexico continues to be the highest immigrant-sending nation each year, though the total number of Mexicans residing in the U.S. is offset by the high percentage who return to their home country. The number of immigrants coming from Latin American countries other than Mexico has skyrocketed 1.6 million since 2010.

While the vast majority of new immigrants continue to set up shop in border states like Texas, California and Florida, states like North Dakota and West Virginia are seeing large increases in their states' percentage of immigrants (87 and 33 percent, respectively).