California is losing its American roots. A new study analyzing the most recent U.S. census indicates that a majority of new settlers into the state come from outside of the country instead of from another state.
The state is among the most popular destinations for immigrants, particularly the Southern California region, where foreign-born adults nearly equal the number of American residents, Governing Magazine found.
This is a stark contrast to many of its neighboring states, which continue to attract new residents from other parts of the country. For instance, the state of Washington lures a significant number of Californians, the Sacramento Bee reported.
Solely looking at American residents within the state, Californians represent 64 percent of the population, but when factoring in the foreign-born individuals, the numbers slip to 40 percent. These statistics indicate that more Americans are moving out of the state annually than are moving in. This does not include undocumented immigrants, whose population is thought to be just under 3 million in California, according to the Public Policy Institute of California.
In particular, California is becoming less affordable for low-income families. A study found that California ranked second among average annual living costs outside of Hawaii. As more affluent people move into California, many residents are packing their bags and heading east to states like Texas and Oklahoma. (RELATED: CALIFORNIA ATTORNEY GENERAL BECOMES LATEST DEMOCRAT TO CALL FOR DECRIMINALIZATION OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS)
“There was really nothing left for me in California,” said Kiril Kundurazieff. “The cost of living was high. The rent was high. The job market was debatable.”
From 2005 through 2015, California lost 260,000 residents due to socioeconomic concerns.
“Why are people leaving? Economic reasons, the high cost of living, are certainly a part of it,” said Hans Johnson, a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. “For those people (near the poverty line), California is not viable.”
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