Immigration 101

The U.S. immigration system is complex and can be difficult to understand. These resources provide key data points, historical information, and background on hot topics in immigration. Learn the basics about immigration.

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All Immigration 101 Content

Publication Date: 
August 1, 2011
Fewer Mexicans are Entering the U.S., Fewer Are Leaving, and Mexican American Births Now Outpace Immigration from Mexico Much of what we thought we knew about immigration is changing, and...
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April 12, 2011
In its second year under the Obama Administration, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)—which is responsible for the nation’s three immigration agencies (USCIS, CBP, and ICE)—continues to...
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March 28, 2011
Attacks against the Citizenship Clause of the 14th Amendment have picked up in recent months, with legislators at both the national and state levels introducing bills that would deny U.S. citizenship...
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January 4, 2011
Attacks on birthright citizenship at the federal and state level are bound to take many forms—from outright repeal of the Fourteenth Amendment to refusal by states to issue birth certificates to...
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October 14, 2010
At a time when federal, state, and local elections are often decided by small voting margins—with...
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September 13, 2010
It’s hardly news that the complaints of our latter-day nativists and immigration restrictionists—from Sam Huntington to Rush Limbaugh, from FAIR to V-DARE—resonate with the nativist arguments of some...
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September 9, 2010
Immigration Enforcement in a Time of Recession Recent estimates from the Pew Hispanic Center indicate that the number of unauthorized...
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September 2, 2010
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August 4, 2010
New CBO Report Underscores Diverse Contributions of Foreign-Born Workers A recent report from the...
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June 28, 2010
While immigrant communities across the nation endure the long wait for immigration reform, there are roughly 19 million immigrant women and girls currently in the U.S. Immigrant women, particularly...
May 13, 2022

Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, which is poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, could have damaging effects to immigrant rights secured through the courts. The...

May 11, 2022

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a temporary rule last week that automatically extends employment authorization for certain noncitizens waiting for USCIS to process their...

May 2, 2022

Data from the 2020 U.S. Census Bureau show that there are approximately 20.7 million Asian and Pacific Islanders in the United States—comprising 6.2 % of the U.S. population—that make up the...

April 22, 2022

The Biden administration failed to issue many of the immigrant visas—more commonly known as green cards—that were allotted last year for immigrants who have been sponsored by a U.S. employer or...

March 30, 2022

More than two-thirds of U.S. counties saw natural decreases in population between 2020 and 2021, according to the latest estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau. This means that almost 2,300...

February 24, 2022

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to clarify the meaning of the “public charge ground of inadmissibility” on February 24. The new guidance will be...

February 22, 2022

The Canadian government released its 2022-2024 immigration targets earlier this week. Should it reach these targets, the number of new immigrants entering Canada would reach levels not seen in...

February 10, 2022

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) unveiled a new mission statement this week, signaling an important shift in how the agency wants to tell its story and shape its priorities ahead...

February 2, 2022

Some media outlets have reached a fever pitch over what they have deemed President Biden’s “secret flights of migrants.” They claim that the Biden administration is covertly flying migrants into...

December 8, 2021

The Biden administration has—in its first year—rolled back many of the worst discriminatory policies implemented by the Trump administration that targeted non-U.S. citizens. But much work remains...

July 5, 2023

In a split decision issued on June 22, the Supreme Court ruled against two noncitizens seeking to overturn agency findings that their state criminal convictions qualified as “aggravated felonies...

June 12, 2023

Immigrants—many of whom are women—make up a significant portion of the U.S. population. In 2021, 23.2 million lived in the United States, outnumbering immigrant men, according to recent analysis...

May 17, 2023

Each May, the United States recognizes the influence and contributions of Asian and Pacific Islanders during AAPI Heritage Month. It also serves as a time to reflect on the many differences among...

May 5, 2023

Written by Bella Wexler, Communications Fellow at the American Immigration Council. As of 2023, Arizona remains the only state with English-only education legislation still in effect. Its law—...

March 21, 2023

On March 8, a Florida court blocked the Biden administration from using a key border program referred to as Parole plus Alternative to Detention (Parole + ATD). The court’s decision vacated the...

March 17, 2023

Immigration agencies have a problem with transparency. With an immigration system as complex as ours and Freedom of Information Act offices that are chronically underfunded, it’s no surprise that...

February 24, 2023

Written by Steven Hubbard, Senior Data Scientist and Robin Lundh, Research Manager Black immigrants make up a vital part of America’s rich cultural life. Think of authors Chinua Achebe and...

February 10, 2023

In January, Republicans took control of the House of Representatives. After a lengthy fight over the Speaker of the House resolved, the new majority wasted no time in holding multiple hearings on...

January 17, 2023

On January 3, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) finally published a new proposed fee schedule for immigration benefits—which is to say, it took an important step to becoming a...

December 8, 2022

Can immigration avoid a cold winter in Congress? That’s the question immigrants and their advocates are asking as time runs out on the current Congress. The fate of Afghan evacuees, Dreamers,...

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