Facts on immigration in the United States
A section of the wall at the U.S.-Mexico border at Imperial Beach, California.
June 15th, 2012
11:14 AM ET

Facts on immigration in the United States

The Obama administration said Friday that it will stop deporting illegal immigrants younger than 30 if they were brought to the United States as children and meet certain other requirements. (See Department of Homeland Security's explanation of the new policy)

Below are a few facts about immigration in the United States:

- The number of illegal immigrants in the United States was estimated at 11.5 million in 2011, according to the Pew Hispanic Center.

- The illegal immigrant population grew by 27% between 2000 and 2009, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

- Sixty-three percent of the illegal immigrant population (approximately 6.8 million) entered the United States before 2000. (DHS)

- Fifty-eight percent of the illegal immigrant population is from Mexico. (Pew)

- Twenty-four percent of illegal immigrants reside in California; 16% reside in Texas. (DHS)

And here are recent developments relating to immigration in the United States:

- 2008: The Department of Homeland Security apprehended 792,000 foreign nationals. Eighty-eight percent of those arrested were natives of Mexico. Immigration and Customs Enforcement apprehended 379,000 people. (DHS)

- 2008: The Department of Homeland Security removed 359,000 illegal immigrants from the United States. Of those, 69% were repatriated to Mexico; 8% were repatriated to Honduras; 7.7% were repatriated to Guatemala. (DHS)

- 2008: More than 810,000 illegal immigrants accepted offers to return to their home countries without being forcibly removed. (DHS)

- 2008: The Department of Homeland Security removed 97,100 criminals who were also illegal immigrants. Of those, 36% had been convicted of drug-related crimes. (DHS)

- 2009: The number of children born to at least one unauthorized-immigrant parent was 350,000. These made up 8% of all U.S. births. (Pew)

- 2010: The total number of unauthorized immigrants in the nation's labor force in United States is 8 million. They made up 5.2% of the labor force in 2010. (Pew)

- 2010: About 1.04 million people received legal permanent resident status. Of those, 139,120 were born in Mexico, 70,863 were born in China, and 58,173 were born in the Philippines (DHS).

- 2011: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement removed 396,906 illegal immigrants from the United States, the largest number in the agency's history. Of those, 216,698 (nearly 55%) had been convicted of felonies or misdemeanors. (ICE)

- April 23, 2012: The Pew Hispanic Center announced that net migration from Mexico to the United States had stopped and possibly even reversed. The center noted that from 2005 to 2010, about 1.4 million Mexicans immigrated to the United States, and about 1.4 million Mexican immigrants and their U.S.-born children moved from the United States to Mexico.

Related stories:

Immigration shift sparks reaction from both sides

Photos: Putting a face on the immigration debate

Time: Family photos of an undocumented immigrant

CNN Money: On the rise - immigrant entrepreneurs

CNN Money: I'm a successful entrepreneur but might get deported

WSB: Teen to file paperwork fighting deportation

Immigration lessons for the U.S. from around the world

Does this affect you? Share with us on iReport

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Filed under: Immigration
soundoff (92 Responses)
  1. mickey1313

    Obama angers me more every time he opens his mouth. I voted for him once, and to stop mittens from ruling I'll probably do it again. It sucks not having a good candidate running, just a lesser of two evils.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
    • megaloteras

      Mickey, your are not alone. I wonder what would happen if on election day, nobody showed up to vote!

      June 15, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • A W Messenger

      The president doesn't have the authority to do this. He's playing the role of dictator of the US.
      So remember, when you vote for him again in 2012, you are voting to retain a dictator in the office of the president.

      June 15, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mickey1313

    These " people" spread and reproduce line cancer. The amendment that they use to justify not deporting the children of illegal immigrants, was was put into play to protect native Americans and ex- slaves, not people who broke the law to get here.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
    • jackwhiteeleven@gmail.com

      Illegals are only "people" in the academic sense. The fail all other measures and standards that give them human qualities.

      June 15, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  3. saywhat

    @mickey
    President Obama's presidency has been almost under siege by the opposition and his struggle to prove himself as a war President, strong and aggressive . But the pragmatism and rationale so glaringly needed to tackle a failing foreign policy and militarism keeps him wavering. The unrelenting pressure of foreign lobbies, big business, special interests was compounded by the far right religious forces questioning his faith , origin and those raising their eyebrows on the legitimacy of his election.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:33 am | Report abuse |
  4. saywhat

    You are right on the frightening alternative – the likes of Romney ruling us.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
    • megaloteras

      Saywhat You might be right about Romney, but don't forget, the same was said about JFK, Reagan (the actor), just to mention a couple.

      June 15, 2012 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |
    • mickey1313

      Mega, regan was flat out evil. And jfk was assassinated because he was trying to end Americans cooperation with the one world order. Romney is a psychotic cult member.

      June 15, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  5. noworries

    Hey, he's got to get his illegal votes somewhere!!! But as far as mitt, who knows....his dad was one of the best governors Michigan has ever had.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  6. DEH TOOK ER JOBS

    Spending billions on a problem that is not really a problem.....Typical Republican propaganda to brainwash their hate filled Legion.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  7. saywhat

    Immigration is indeed an issue of large dimensions which for one reason or the other was not met head on in the past. It needs careful examination not just sentiments. As sadly displayed by some border states.
    The news now that immigration from Mexico "has stopped, even reversed' may provide a breather to the policy makers.We need the workers but need also to lessen the burden on tax payers.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:39 am | Report abuse |
  8. AC2717

    this is ridiculous
    no a 4 year old cannot go in front of the judge and waive her rights, but her parents did and as her legal guardines they di dit for her, just if my parents did something on my behalf when I was under 18. GET OUT, STAY OUT, COME BACK WHEN YOU DO IT LEGALLY. I am for imagration, DO IT LEGALLY

    June 15, 2012 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
  9. AC2717

    yeah i messed up my spelling, get over it

    June 15, 2012 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  10. WOW

    I betting that well over half the violent and drug related crimes committed by Illegals were under the age of 30.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
  11. Elliot

    Ha, look at that wall in California! The only think that piece of junk is keeping out is ol' illegal grandma in her wheelchair. Anyways, if they want to stay I think we should force them to join the military or leave. If you have already been in the military good, not sure how you got in, but ok. If you are going to college, too bad you can start back up after you served your time.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
  12. Scudmaster

    This is an impeachable offense, usurping the powers granted only to Congress, and should be the last straw for this idiot in the White House. Boot him out, put him in prison, this clown who would be king!

    June 15, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  13. johnmenacherjr

    Call me a liberal or a commie but man this really PO's me, Anchor babies free everything and its mexico as usual get them out. we need the jobs here for americans whatever they are or background not a bunch of wage lowering jerks. The entered illegal and that is that! I disagree with the ptresident big time on this ones but those marvelous JOB CREATORS need them to force wages and work rights from us so they are always going to be suckling off the middle class.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  14. Seer

    Legals left behind
    I came to the US legally when I was 20 years old. I got a Masters degree in Engineering and have been here legally for the past 12 years. I don't have a greencard yet and may not get it for another 30 years due to backlogs and inefficiencies in the legal immigration system. Politicians like Senator Grassley are blocking common-sense reform (HR 3012). If politicians help legal immigrants, they may get thousands of votes which is not significant, but if they help illegals, they get millions of votes.

    June 15, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  15. TIRED IN GA

    This whole country needs reform..... Not just healthcare. The illegal immigration and welfare... Our country cannot contiue to support these people... Those of us who work day in and day out can barely support our families while we lose valuable money and resources to the ones who come here for a "better life". I dont have a problem with anyone coming to this country but do it properly.. Pay taxes and social security.. Does anyone have any idea how much money leaves our country every year and is sent to Mexico?? What do you think would happen if we went to Mexico illegally? Or any other country for that fact?? do you think there would be some organization standing up for us and fighting for us to remain in that country? We need a government that will stand up and say enough is enough.... NO MORE FREE RIDES........ I think its only fair if not we are fast becoming a weak and poor nation

    June 15, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anne Balzhiser

      What free ride are you talking about? They pay into our social security system without qualifing for any benefits. They pay taxes without being able to claim their dependants back home whom they are supporting. They engender a host of community and service jobs while not being able to be hired for any of them. They work tirelessly, in nearly unbearable conditions, with no rights to improve those conditions. And by the way–there is no way, as you say, for them to immigrate to this country "properly." A better informed U.S. public should know that. Other countries do not offer those who wish to leave the U.S. with invisible policies and immigration lines to nowhere, as exists here. Time to stop blaming immigrants and making them scape-goats for our own personal problems.

      June 15, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
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