Texas Tribune by Julian Aguilar
One year after President Obama’s decision to allow undocumented-immigrant youths to apply for renewable work permits and a two-year reprieve from deportation proceedings, Texas — perhaps due to its immigration policies — beats the national average of approved applicants.
At the same time, the Pew Research Center says that the number of undocumented immigrants in Texas has remained steady, or possibly increased, while the rest of the country saw a dip in overall illegal immigration the past few years.
Analysts argue that trend could also be attributed to the state’s middle-of-the-road polices on immigration enforcement.
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy was implemented in August 2012. Since then, approximately 91,000 of the state’s 165,000 eligible immigrants (about 55 percent) have applied and been accepted for processing, according to data from the U.S. Citizen Immigration Services obtained by the D.C.-based Migration Policy Institute. Throughout the country, about 538,000 applications have been accepted out of a possible 1,089,000, or about 49 percent.
Taken together, California and Texas are home to 44 percent of the country’s DACA-eligible immigrants. Randy Capps, a senior analyst and demographer with the MPI, said geography is one reason for that. About 59 percent of the country’s eligible applicants are from Mexico, and Mexicans also have the highest application rate, about 64 percent.