Immigration Task Force

About the Task Force

Immigration reform is at the top of the congressional and presidential agendas. The economic, national security, and human rights impacts of the nation’s immigration system mandate reform informed by objective, data-driven, empirical research and analysis.

America’s Demographic Edge

Developed countries like the United States are aging rapidly, and many face population stagnation or decline. This “demographic transition” leaves fewer workers to power the economy and pay into social programs, even as the number of elderly retirees increases. Immigrants make the U.S. population younger and sustain healthy population growth, giving the United States a demographic and economic advantage. Over the coming decades, the United States is projected to have faster population growth and slower aging than other developed countries. Without immigrants, the United States would lose this demographic edge. When immigrant contributions to population growth are removed, the U.S. population is projected to stop growing in the 2040s.

American population with and without immigration

New Deferred Action Statistics May Hold Key Implications for Future Legalization

Last Thursday, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) released updated data on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. According to the new data, USCIS has approved over 550,000 applications, representing 86 percent of applications accepted for review. Based on estimates of the eligible population, this accounts for more than half of DACA-eligible unauthorized immigrants.

Has the Unauthorized Immigrant Population Leveled Off?

Today, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released an updated estimate of the unauthorized immigrant population. As of January 1, 2012, DHS estimated that 11.4 million unauthorized immigrants were in the country. By comparison, the Pew Research Center’s commonly-cited estimates suggest that about 11.7 million unauthorized immigrants were in the country as of March 2012.

Performance Measures Suggest that Border Strategy May Be Working

Recent weeks have seen a flurry of debate over the Obama Administration’s deportation numbers. As stakeholders on all sides of the debate put forward their take on the data, two key facts have been overlooked. First, the increase in formal border removals is part of a deliberate strategy to deter unauthorized immigrants at the border. Second, by at least one of the few sets of performance data available, the strategy appears to be working.