It's well known by now who stands to benefit from President Obama's immigration plan: Immigrants without legal status who have lived in the United States at least five years and are parents of U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents - and immigrants who arrived as children before 2010. They are the two main groups eligible for deportation relief.
But what about those who don't stand to benefit? There are many of them, roughly 5.8 million according to data released Monday by the Pew Research Center. These include people who are relative newcomers, single immigrants without children and others.
According to Pew, those ineligible for temporary relief under Obama's executive action plan are more likely to be unmarried, and to not have U.S.-born children. And more are likely to be from countries other than Mexico.
An estimated 96 percent of those ineligible don't have U.S.-born children; comparably, 77 percent of those believed eligible are the parents of U.S.-born kids. And 60 percent, as opposed to 39 percent among those eligible, are believed to be single.
A few highlights from the report:
- Men who are ineligible are more likely to be single. Sixty-four percent of ineligible adult men are single, compared with 36 percent of those who are eligible.
- Slightly more (73 percent vs. 69 percent) of those believed ineligible are working.
- Western states such as California, where there are more immigrants from Mexico, tend to have more people eligible for deportation relief: "For example, 48% of California’s unauthorized immigrant population is ineligible for relief, compared with 61% in New York."
- Newcomers who have U.S.-born children are out of luck. According to the report, there are some 250,000 unauthorized immigrant adults who have U.S.-born children living at home, but can't apply for relief because they arrived within the past five years.
- Recently arrived youths are also ineligible. Pew estimates there are about 350,000 unauthorized immigrant minors under 18 who don't meet requirements for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which since 2012 has granted two years' worth of temporary legal status and work permits to young people who arrived before age 16. One requirement is having lived in the U.S. at least five years.
Not mentioned in the report specifically are the parents of young immigrants who in the last two years have qualified for deferred action. Immigrant advocates sought to have these parents included in the plan, but Obama administration officials have said it wasn't legally feasible.
The fine print on the application process has yet to emerge. It's expected that immigrants who are eligible will be able to apply for temporary relief in the spring of 2015. They will be allowed to live and work legally in the U.S., but won't have a path to citizenship.