This new report shows that more Mexicans are leaving the U.S. than entering for several reasons.
During all this heated debate about immigration, particularly from Mexico and by presidential candidate Donald Trump, it seems that few have stopped to inquire about whether the huge influx of immigrants is still a prevalent issue in the United States. Pew Research Center decided to do the math on Mexican immigration, and they found that the number of Mexican immigrants entering the United States has significantly decreased from 2009 to 2014.
Once the largest wave of immigration Americans had ever seen, the number of Mexican immigrants rapidly increased from 3 million to 13 million in recent decades and these migrants have made up most of the immigrants entering the whole country. Now, however, Pew found that from 2009 to 2014, America actually saw a net loss of 150,000 Mexicans migrating to the U.S.
Pew says that the primary reason for the sharp decrease is that fewer Mexicans are actually traveling to America, but other factors were cited as well. For one, approximately one million Mexicans and their families returned to Mexico, stating that their number one reason for returning was to be reunited with their families. While one million Mexicans left, only about 870,000 arrived. According to The Anti-Media, social networks and communication with family members back in Mexico has declined, causing families in America to want to return to be with them. Another factor is the 2008 recession in the U.S. and the slow recovery. While America’s economy was dwindling and struggling to recuperate from the collapse of the housing market, Mexico’s economy saw an improvement. Yet another reason for the decline could be that the number of illegal immigrants that became legal citizens increased significantly.
Perhaps the most politically-relevant reason for the decrease that Pew cited is the stricter border controls that came into practice under the Obama administration that seem to have aided in keeping out illegal immigrants. Ana Gonzalez-Barrera from the Pew Research team stated that, “We know that crossings are definitely down and we also know it is much more difficult and costly to cross now than it used to be.” Donald Trump in particular has been adamant about building a wall that will keep Mexicans out, and has gone so far as to say that Mexico will fund the project. Though this is unlikely to ever occur, the stricter border controls that are actually working to decrease illegal migrants shows that perhaps new, effective laws could reduce the amount of illegal immigrants even more if that is the direction the United States wants to head in.
Whatever the reason for the decrease is, Gonzalez-Barrera is clear about one thing:
“We think Mexican migration is definitely in a new phase, and it will not return to the levels it once had.”
Despite these facts, it’s likely that increased immigration laws will be a huge part of the presidential candidate speeches and debates and continue to cause a stir amongst American citizens who feel threatened by these migrants that enter the country simply to work and support their families.
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