Maybe the U.S.-Mexico border does not need to be patrolled as heavily. The Pew Hispanic Center reported Wednesday that the number of illegal immigrants has dropped sharply since 2007, apparently due to the dismal job market. According to the study, an estimated 300,000 fewer people annually have arrived in the U.S. illegally since 2007—meaning the overall size of the undocumented population has dropped to 11 million people. Illegal immigrants still represent 28 percent of the foreign-born population, and nearly half of them arrived since 2000. One demographer said there has been a steady downward trend over the past four years. Braulio Gonzalez, a Guatemalan who is undocumented, said “people don’t want to come here now, they know the economy is bad.” States that have been hit the hardest by the housing crisis have seen the biggest drops in the undocumented population.
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