The immigrant population in Texas has soared to well over four million over the last several decades, now placing the state in a tie with New York for the second largest such population across the country.
A recent Pew Research Center analysis found that as of 2014 the immigration population in the Lone Star state stood at 4.5 million. Only California has a larger immigrant population, estimated to be at around 10.5 million in 2014.
California Home to Most Immigrants
Researchers added from about 1850 to 1970, the New York immigrant population stood head and shoulders above all others in terms of size, but by the 1980s the flood of immigrants heading out West to California began to surge.
In all, the top three immigrants states account for nearly half of the country’s entire population, with 25 percent of all immigrants residing in California and 11 percent each in New York and Texas.
The overwhelming share of the immigrant population living in California and Texas is reported to be from either Mexico and parts of Asia, while New York still boasts the most diverse immigrant population of all, including natives from the Caribbean, Asia, Europe, Canada, South America and Mexico.
Meanwhile, the top country of origin among immigrants in Texas has long proven to be Mexico. About one-in-ten immigrants over the age of five insist they only speak English at home in both Texas and California, compared to be about 25 percent of the New York population.
Researchers also found that immigrants residing in New York and California are much more likely to have lived in the U.S. longer than those in Texas. Overall, an average of 52 percent of those living in California or New York has legal citizenship, compared to 35 percent in Texas.
With so many immigrants now making Texas their home, the stakes stemming from local government officials recent move to sue the Obama administration over the president’s executive actions on immigration are particularly high.
Texas Sues Obama Administration Over Immigration Actions
The U.S. Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in the case and is expected to render a decision sometime in early June.
Known as the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA), the president’s actions would have paved the way for as many as four million undocumented people, living in the states with without authorization since 2010, to potentially remain in the U.S., without the fear of deportation, for three renewable years.