Illegal immigrant population soars to 11.6 million

by Paul Bedard | Washington Secrets

President Joe Biden’s open borders policies have led to a more than 10% surge in the United States’s illegal immigrant population, according to a new review of federal data.

Numbers reviewed by the Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that the illegal population grew from 10.2 million when Biden took office to 11.6 million in April.

“This means that illegal immigrants accounted for some 1.35 million (about two-thirds) of the two million growth in the total foreign-born population since President Biden took office,” according to the analysis from the Center for Immigration Studies.

As a result, the foreign-born population in the nation, which includes legal and illegal immigrants, is 47 million, or 14.3% of the total population, the highest in 112 years.

Without taking action to stop illegal crossings, more illegal immigrants are expected to pour over the border, raising the foreign-born population to a record level by Election Day, the analysis said.

“As a share of the total population, the foreign-born now account for 14.3% of the U.S. population — the highest percentage in 112 years. If present trends continue, the foreign-born share of the population will surpass the all-time high in American history by September of next year,” according to the report written by Steven A. Camarota and Karen Zeigler.

“Immigration is sometimes seen as like the weather — something outside the control of public policy,” the report added. “In fact, it must be understood that the level of legal immigration as well as policies and resources directed at controlling illegal immigration all represent policy choices. The dramatic growth in the foreign-born population in the last 16 months are the direct result of those choices.”

The center advocates strict immigration controls, warning that boosting the foreign, and especially illegal, population is costly to taxpayers.

It regularly reports on Census Bureau data to highlight the growth in immigrants and refugees in the nation, including estimates of illegal immigrants.

Since coming to office, the Biden administration has aggressively dismantled former President Donald Trump’s programs to curb illegal and legal immigration by opening the borders, stopping the construction of a border wall, and raising limits on refugees and other curbs on migration.

The result has been a massive and historic surge of illegal immigrants into the U.S., overwhelming border facilities and angering border-state officials and citizens.

“What’s changed?” the report asked. “At least some of the dramatic increase in the foreign-born population corresponds to the large surge of illegal immigrants at the southern border. This dramatic increase in border encounters seems closely related to President Biden’s campaign promises that created the perception, well before he even took office, that he would curtail immigration enforcement.”

Key points pulled from the report:

  • The 47 million foreign-born residents (legal and illegal) in the country in April of 2022 is the largest number ever recorded in any U.S. government survey or decennial census.
  • The total foreign-born population (legal and illegal) increased by two million in the first 16 months of the Biden administration — January 2021 to April 2022 — twice as fast as the U.S.-born population grew.
  • We preliminarily estimate that illegal immigrants accounted for two-thirds of the growth in the foreign-born population since January 2021 — 1.35 million.
  • Taking a longer view, since 2000, the total foreign-born population has grown by 50%; it’s doubled since 1990, tripled since 1980, and quintupled since 1970.
  • As a share of the total population, the foreign-born now account for 14.3% of the population, or one in seven U.S. residents — the highest percentage in 112 years. As recently as 1990 they were one in 13 U.S. residents.
  • If present trends continue, the foreign-born share of the population will reach 14.9% of the U.S. population in September 2023, higher than at any time in the nation’s 246-year history.
  • On average the foreign-born population has grown by 132,000 a month since President Biden took office, compared to 59,000 per month in Obama’s first term, 76,000 per month in Obama’s second term, and 42,000 per month under Trump before COVID-19 hit.
  • While much of the recent increase in the total foreign-born population is due to illegal immigration, those in the country legally still account for three-fourths of all foreign-born residents.
  • The states with the largest increase in the total foreign-born population from January 2021 to April 2022 are California (up 527,000), Florida (up 390,000), Pennsylvania (up 375,000), Michigan (up 247,000), Georgia (up 152,000), Arizona (up 148,000), New York (up 145,000), Tennessee (up 130,000), and South Carolina (up 128,000).

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