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

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

    55% felons or misdemeanors - This is disturbing ... why is this not a highlighted stat in every illegal immigration discussion. We need to fix as well as enforce ... now.

    June 15, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • TheTruth21

      This statistic does not suggest a majority of illegal immingrants are felons or have committed misdemeanors. It says 55% of the illegal immigrants deported had criminal histories. That is what I.C.E. and law enforcement has been focused on, the ones with criminal histories. Don't get confused by this stat and assume that a majority of all illegal immigrants have a criminal background. That is misleading and utterly wrong

      June 15, 2012 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Mr. Howdydoody

    Perfect ploy for the Obama admin to gain voters. Oh we're going to give you amnesty, just show up at XYZ location on this day. Then spring the trap and round them all up and send them back to Mexico.

    June 15, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Mr Dalloway

    What about our American family members who are hurting financially, those who are homeless, unemployed, given lengthy sentences for nonviolent crimes. These are the people we need to take care of first. Our elderly our children our, mothers and father are suffering.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
  4. PaulMN

    We are supposed to be a nation of laws. This is what happens when you don't enforce the laws... ie we didn't enforce the immigration laws for many years... now we are faced with this problem of many illegal immigrants. If you have laws, then enforce them; otherwise change the laws to something that you will enforce.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mr Dalloway

      The laws are being enforced but only against us it seems, the rest can do whatever they want to it seems.

      June 15, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Mr Dalloway

    This is why OUR teens and young adults will have a harder time finding employment, our government wants to help everyone but it's own people, what an American nightmare.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ms. LiLy

      WoW, Mr. Dalloway, I guess your eager to have our teens and young adults work janitorial, landscaping or factory jobs. Because that is primarily the only jobs illegal immigrants will be employed for. Most teens and young adults will not be caught dead cleaning a public bathroom, isn' that what we got the illegals for?

      June 15, 2012 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Mr Dalloway

    I will stand by my American family first over any others.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:30 pm | Report abuse |
  7. banasy©

    Illegal immigrants aren't allowed to vote.
    I keep seeing this in terms of getting votes for Obama, but it just isn't true.
    If one is talking about getting the vote from the l"atino community, they mean from the legal Latinos.
    Please stop with the spreading of misinformation, folks.
    If you don't like him, don't vote for him.
    Simple as that.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mr Dalloway

      It's to make it more likely that legal Hispanics will vote for Obama.

      June 15, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mr Dalloway

    Sure let them sign up for this, find out who their parents, siblings, friends are and thenn tell them to get out if they know what's good for them.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:34 pm | Report abuse |
  9. banasy©

    I am an independent, blog-o-matics.
    You may conclude whatever you wish; I have concluded you are a troll.
    Have a pleasant afternoon.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Mary

    The children of the illegal immigrants when of age to vote CAN. Other than that banasy would be correct.

    June 15, 2012 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  11. frank

    unless your a Native American you or your ancestors came from some where else. These kids didn't ask to come. Some have server in our military some want to better their education. Go to a ceramony where they swear in new citizeens . Not all come from mexico. Im Native and as far as that goes you white people have ruined my country I want to take it back so all of you go home .

    June 15, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Mr Dalloway

    American people are being sidelined in their own country.

    June 15, 2012 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rstarr

      The sky is falling again.

      June 15, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. banasy©

    What an absurd motion.

    June 15, 2012 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  14. banasy©

    Hi, Kenny.
    I thought it was you, but you aren't usually so...mean-spirited.
    So, I guess, in a way, yes.
    Changing it up, are you?

    June 15, 2012 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |

    The US Navy at beginning of Afghan war alone had almost 28,000 non US citizens serving andalmost every branch of military thousands, that as services realized they would not get emough Citizens to volunteer offered as a bonus citizenship after one length of service.
    Today we have within all branches, and even within some elite groups, menand womenwho never set foot upon US soil until they joined military.
    We now have recruitment centers in many foreign nations, closest to home being Mexico City and Philipines.
    Not that it matters.

    June 15, 2012 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
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