By 2050, nearly one in five Americans will be foreign-born and the number of those 65 and over will have more than doubled in size, according to a report Monday by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center. The center cautioned that the findings are merely projections based on current trends, but they offer an intriguing picture of the possible long-term effects of the surge in immigration unleashed in 1965, when Congress abolished a restrictive quota system that had all but ended immigration from non-European countries since the 1920s. The projections:
438-million people: The rising number of immigrants and their children will be largely responsible for a projected 47 percent increase in the overall population, from 296-million in 2005 to 438-million by 2050. By 2025, the foreign-born share of the population will surpass the peak during the last great wave of immigration, between 1860 and 1920, when foreign-born residents made up as much as 15 percent of the U.S. population. By 2050, 19 percent of Americans will be foreign-born.
The elderly: Between 2005 and 2050, the number of Americans 65 or older will more than double, accounting for 19 percent of the population, compared with 12 percent today. Together with young children, there will be 72 seniors and children per 100 working-age adults in 2050, up from 59 in 2005.
Hispanics: The numbers are projected to triple, to 29 percent of the population, accounting for most of the growth through 2050.
Asians: Their numbers are also expected to triple, to 9 percent of the population.
BLACKS: They are projected to maintain the current 13 percent share of the population.