Pew Research Center Says Hispanic Majority in California Running Behind Schedule
Print Friendly and PDF
Promoters of our country's demographic transformation proclaim its inevitability. But few things are actually inevitable. What people call "inevitable" is often what they want to occur anyway.

According to new data from California, even the "inevitable" Hispanicization of that state is running behind schedule. What a shocker!

Here's what Pew Research Center reports:

FT_15.06.03_califProjectionsShare[1]California reached a milestone in 2014 when it became only the third U.S. state where white non-Hispanics were outnumbered by another racial or ethnic group. At about 15 million, Hispanics for the first time constituted California’s largest racial or ethnic group, according to the state’s Department of Finance.

However, it could be a half-century (or longer) before Hispanics become a full majority in California, if that demographic milestone is reached at all, according to scaled-back state population projections published by the state Finance Department.

Will California ever become a majority-Latino state? Maybe not

By Mark Hugo Lopez and Jens Manuel Krogstad, Pew Research Center, June 4, 2015.

In attempting to predict the future, we use present trends, because it's what we have to work with. But what if the present trends themselves change?

Also, the statistics themselves must be examined for accuracy. But it's interesting that the Pew Center is reporting this projection, whereas previous projections showed a faster Hispanic population increase.

Under projections published in 2007, the state’s Hispanic population was expected to reach 31 million in 2050, or 52.1% of all Californians. But according to updated projections released late last year, Hispanics are now expected to number 23.7 million in 2050, or 47.6% of all Californians. That pushes the prospect of a Hispanic demographic majority further into the future – perhaps to sometime after 2060.

The 2014 population projections also included an estimate for 2060 that indicates that Hispanics may not reach a majority by that year, when they are expected to number 25.5 million, or 49.3% of California’s population.

So, according to Pew, why is California not being Hispanicized as quickly as previously predicted?

This change in the projected growth of the Hispanic population is driven by a number of factors. California has long been a top destination for immigrants from Latin America, but immigration from Latin America to the U.S. began to slow in 2008 due in part to the Great Recession. As a result, national Hispanic population growth today is driven more by U.S. births than by the arrival of new immigrants. At the same time, birth rates are falling among Hispanic women.

As Jeb Bush has proudly told us, Hispanics are fertile. But their fertility rates can change also. They certainly have in Mexico, where the fertility rate has plummeted. See Mexico's Demographic Transition - America's Opportunity .

Then there's another factor, the classification factor, which Paul Jacobs explains in the comments section:

The one thing census projections do not take into account is changes in inter-ethnic marriage. Latinos “out-marry” at a very high rate, even higher for U.S.-born generations, which will impact these numbers.

The census already does a poor job deciphering between Hispanics who claim white on the race question and persons (such as my dad) who have one white parent and one Hispanic parent (and thus check both “yes” to the Hispanic ethnicity question and “white” on the race question), but considering the latter also gets counted as Hispanic, expect the total Hispanic population to grow as the boundaries of ethnicity become less and less salient and the term “Hispanic” becomes a bit more diffuse (like “Italian” or “Irish” ancestry, according to Mary Waters’ work).

What about the whole country? You know what they say, "As California goes, so goes the nation".

California’s lowered Hispanic population projections mirror national projections. The U.S. Census Bureau has reduced Latino population projections by nearly 30 million by 2050 compared with those published in 2008. The bureau has also lowered the overall U.S. population projection for 2050 by about 40 million compared with 2008.

Granted, the illegal alien population may be much higher than generally reported. Immigrants (legal and illegal, now just two sides of the same coin) are still arriving. And the Obama administration continues to facilitate and encourage this.

But just imagine an immigration shutdown, accompanied by a closing of the anchor baby loophole. Would these policies not radically alter the nation's demographics as well?

Print Friendly and PDF