The flow of undocumented immigration coming into the United States is not an issue limited to a few states along the southwest border, but an issue that has spread to other states as well.
Face the Facts USA — a project of George Washington University that puts out factual information about various topics — released an infographic that shows that while California, Texas and Florida continue to have the largest concentrations of undocumented immigrants, other states are seeing rapid growth.
The undocumented population in Georgia grew by 95 percent from 2000 to 2011. During that same time frame, North Carolina’s undocumented population grew by 53 percent, in Texas it grew by 64 percent and in Washington it grew by 51 percent.
Florida saw an 8 percent decline in the number of undocumented immigrants living there during the decade, but the state still ranks third overall — California ranks first and Texas comes in second. Other states with large populations of undocumented immigrants include New York, Illinois, New Jersey, North Carolina and Arizona.
The report also notes that in the decade ending in 2011, an estimated three million new undocumented immigrants were added to the U.S. population, bringing the nation’s undocumented immigrant population total to 11.5 million.
Immigration reform makes its way through Congress
These numbers come at a time when Congress is debating immigration reform.
The Senate approved it’s own immigration reform bill last month and the House is now taking up the issue. House Republicans affirmed last week that they will follow a piece by piece approach to addressing the issue, meaning they’ll only take up smaller immigration bills.
Meanwhile, a bipartisan House group still has plans to introduce their own version of a comprehensive immigration reform bill. However, the chances that the Republican-controlled House will actually take up that bill are slim now that GOP House leaders have decided on the piecemeal approach to immigration reform.
Several Republican leaders, including House Speaker John Boehner and former President George W. Bush, have said that inaction on immigration reform is not an option. So why do these GOP leaders care so much about the issue?
As Face the Facts USA puts it, it could be because they recognize that “the flow of illegal immigrants in to the United States continues, and it’s not an issue confined to a few border states.”
Originally published on VOXXI as Immigration reform issue not confined to border states