More than a million illegal immigrants have fled the country, mostly because increased immigration enforcement has discouraged them from trying to put down roots in the U.S., according to a study released Wednesday by the Center for Immigration Studies.
The Washington, D.C.-based group has been pushing for stronger immigration law enforcement for years.
The study concludes that the illegal immigrant population in the U.S. dropped 1.3 million or 11 percent from August 2007 to May 2008. That leaves 11.2 million illegal immigrants in the country, according to the study.
The study’s co-author, Steven Camarota, said he believes most of the drop is from illegal immigrants fleeing enforcement rather than losing their jobs because the drop in their numbers started before the unemployment rate began to rise. The drop in the number of illegal immigrants is already greater than that seen in the last recession, he said.
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