Expand chart
Reproduced from Pew Research Center; Note: Duration share is for adult immigrants; Chart: Axios Visuals

The number of unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. has dropped to the lowest level in 10 years, but today's immigrants are more likely to have been in the U.S. for more than a decade, according to a new study by Pew Research.

Why it matters: While the Trump administration wages war on illegal border crossers and immigrants who overstay their visas, the actual number of unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. has been falling — even as the share of the population born outside the U.S. has reached an all-time high.

Between the lines: The trend is largely due to a dramatic decrease in the number of Mexican immigrants illegally entering the U.S. Meanwhile, there's been a notable uptick in the number of unauthorized immigrants from Central American countries.

  • Central America was the only region that had more unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. in 2016 than in 2007.

By the numbers: The median number of years that unauthorized adult immigrants have been in the U.S. reached a new high of 14.8 years in 2016, and most have been in the U.S. for more than 10 years. This likely means there have been fewer new, unauthorized immigrants coming to the U.S. in recent years.

  • The Trump administration has claimed that illegal immigrants steal American jobs, but the share of the U.S. workforce made up of unauthorized immigrants has fallen over the last decade to 4.8%, according to the report.
  • The total number of unauthorized immigrants include the roughly 700,000 immigrants who came to the U.S. as children and are protected from deportation by DACA, as well as at least 317,000 people from 10 nations protected by Temporary Protected Status — both programs the Trump administration has sought to end or cut back on.

Go deeper

The cliffhanger could be ... Georgia

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

It hasn't backed a Democrat for president since 1992, but Georgia's changing demographics may prove pivotal this year — not only to Trump v. Biden, but also to whether Democrats take control of the Senate.

Why it matters: If the fate of the Senate did hinge on Georgia, it might be January before we know the outcome. Meanwhile, voters' understanding of this power in the final days of the election could juice turnout enough to impact presidential results.

Amy Harder, author of Generate
6 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Climate change goes mainstream in presidential debate

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty

The most notable part of Thursday’s presidential debate on climate change was the fact it was included as a topic and assumed as a fact.

The big picture: This is the first time in U.S. presidential history that climate change was a featured issue at a debate. It signals how the problem has become part of the fabric of our society. More extreme weather, like the wildfires ravaging Colorado, is pushing the topic to the front-burner.

Finally, a real debate

Photo: Morry Gash/AP

A more disciplined President Trump held back from the rowdy interruptions at tonight's debate in Nashville, while making some assertions so outlandish that Joe Biden chuckled and even closed his eyes. A Trump campaign adviser told Axios: "He finally listened." 

The result: A real debate.