Illegal Aliens ‘Settling In’ for the Long Haul



A new report – “Settling In: A Profile of the Unauthorized Immigrant Population in the United States”– provides a sobering glimpse into the scale and persistence of illegal immigration in this country.

Examining the period of 2012-2016, the Migration Policy Institute found:

  • 62 percent of illegal aliens lived in the U.S. for up to 10 years. Roughly one in five (21 percent) have resided here for 20 years or more. Using MPI’s estimate of 11.3 million illegal aliens, that translates into 7,006,000 illegals living here for at least a decade.
  • 71 percent of illegal aliens in California lived in the U.S. for a decade or more, as did 70 percent of those in Arizona and 69 percent in New Mexico.
  • Long-term illegal aliens are not just denizens of border states. 68 percent of illegal aliens in Colorado and 67 percent of those in Illinois have lived there for 10 years or longer.
  • 34 percent of the illegal aliens owned homes, with at least 45 percent classified as homeowners in Michigan, Texas, Kansas and New Mexico. An astounding 67 percent of the illegal aliens in Fort Bend County, Texas (outside Houston) owned homes.
  • Even after a decade or more in this country, 47 percent of long-term migrants 25 years old and older had less than a high school education.

The findings point to several conclusions not noted by MPI:

Inevitable results. The foregoing is the legacy of decades of erratic border control and weak or nonexistent interior enforcementThough the Trump administration has bolstered efforts in both areas, the U.S. still lacks a secure entry-exit tracking system.

Hire them and they will stay. Without mandatory E-Verify employment screening, America remains a jobs magnet for low-wage illegal workers. And the presence of so much cheap labor drives down the wages that U.S. employers are willing to pay American employees.

Living off America’s largessFree and open availability of public schools, hospital services and a host of government assistance programs enables illegal aliens to put down roots, and even buy houses.

Local control and the subversion of immigration law. The spread of sanctuary city policies attracts and embeds illegal aliens. This phenomenon is particularly pronounced in urban areas where local officials and media outlets are hostile to the mission of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Wait, there’s more

The 11.3 million illegal aliens enumerated by MPI appears to be a low-ball estimate. If, as the report states, more than 7 million have been in the U.S. for a decade or more, the ongoing influx of illegals points to many more residing in this country now, and far into the future.

About Author

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Bob Dane, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)'s Executive Director, has been with FAIR since 2006. His deep belief is that immigration is the most transformational determinant of where we are heading as a nation and that our policies must be reformed in the public interest. Over many years on thousands of radio, TV and print interviews, Bob has made the case that unless immigration is regulated and sensibly reduced, it will be difficult for America to reduce unemployment, increase wages, improve health care and education and heighten national security. Prior to joining FAIR, Bob spent twenty years in network radio, marketing and communications after an earlier career in policy and budgeting within the Reagan Administration. Bob has a degree from George Mason University in Public Administration and Management.

9 Comments

  1. avatar

    And do not forget the hundreds of billions of OUR dollars actually stolen from us every year. Stolen because this is our money they send OUT of our country to their countries, money totally lost to us, money we get NO benefit from. This is money from the USA, IN ADDITION TO, the hundreds of millions we give these nations annually. But our congress/government keeps right on allowing our country to be exploited, used, mistreated by these nations and their people. Congress even HELPS them ALL to exploit and change and destroy OUR country and we American citizens.

  2. avatar

    There here because american business men want them for cheap labor.you want too know the real problem.just i example.look at the excavation business in calif.all mexican workers .dump truck drivers all Mexican you know why.very simple the white american rich business men wont hire americans.simple cheap labor.thats just 1 example of how are greedy business man has created this illegal imigrant problem

  3. avatar
    Melinda Jean Santa Cruz on

    There are more than 11 million in California alone. Illegals from Cali are getting into congress and on the city councils and no one is doing a thing about it. In my hometown of Escondido, our mayor supported Trump. He enforced the immigration laws and voted against having our town become a sanctuary city. The anchor babies voted him out, if not the illegals. It is truly disgusting. I am assaulted by illegals almost weekly. They are taking over and what hope is there? I have been voting to get them our for 40 years. I voted for Reagan, Prop. 187, and Trump and they are still here. The new mayor will declare our city a sanctuary city. How sick!

  4. avatar
    ebenezeer Jones on

    For almost twenty years the government told us there were 11 million illegals in the US. Now Harvard and Yale study says there are 20 million. I will bet a dollar to a hole in a donut the number is closer to 40 million.

      • avatar

        Frosty Woolridge (frostyw@juno.com ) in his book The Next 100 Million agrees with her on the 60 M figure.
        Our last 5 Presidents refused to enforce our immigration laws. In essence they handed over the keys to America to an untold number of immigrants both legal and illegal while citizens sat by and watched. We are seeing the results of their actions today.
        As for the latest herd, they will remain at the border as long as they are being fed and a chance of amnesty in January after the Democrats take control of the House.We have been sold out by both political parties on the illegal immigration issue, both want them here for various reasons.
        Only citizens can save our nation now, Trump cannot do this alone.

    • avatar

      I agree! The same number for 20 years with 50,000 new ones crossing our border EVERY month??? Even a fifth grader can figure that as a lie. And then add 400,000 of their illegal alien anchor babies every year. And then add the hundreds of thousands of refugees and asylees every year that immediately go on welfare. And then add the hundreds of thousands Temporary Permanent Status foreigners that have been here ten years longer than supposed to be. And then add the million and half of, mostly, third world cesspit nations’ poor/uneducated/unskilled allowed gere legally every year and are a burden from day one. But no one cares that almost none assimulate at all but are changing OUR country into something NOT American. And Congress keeps it all coming, increasing it all.

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