LIFEZETTE — More than 1 million foreigners illegally entered the United States in 2014 and 2015, according to a new study. And stayed.
After a lull brought on in part by a down economy, immigrants — legal and illegal — pouring into the United States rocketed to pre-recession levels, according to the report published Wednesday by the Center for Immigration Studies.
The study, which analyzed data from the Census Bureau, estimated that 2 million people came to the United States legally — and 1.1 million illegally — in 2014 and 2015. The agency reports data in multi-year increments in order to preserve anonymity. The latest figure is up from the 2.3 million immigrants who arrived in 2012 and 2013. The last two-year period to exceed 2014-15 was in 2000 and 2001, when 3.18 million foreigners came.
Steven Camarota, who wrote the report, attributed the renewed surge to a combination of an improved economy that is drawing additional workers, as well as lax border enforcement by the Obama administration.
The study highlights the changing face of immigration. In 2004 and 2005, more than 1 million Mexicans immigrated, about 37 percent of the total and the largest share of any region. Since then, though, immigration from Mexico dropped precipitously. During the most recent two-year period, it was 338,000. That is up from a low of 256,000 in 2010 and 2011, but it has been overtaken by the rest of Latin America and Asia.