Gongol.com > Research > Nation > Emigration from the United States
Emigration from the United States: If Things Are So Bad, Why Aren't People Leaving?
Brian Gongol

During the 2000 Presidential election, some celebrities (notably Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam and Pierre Salinger) threatened to leave the United States should George W. Bush be elected President. Salinger apparently packed his bags; Vedder and others did not. The rhetoric of "leaving the country" persisted during the 2004 election, this time spreading to message boards, newspaper columns, online polls, anonymous commentaries, newspaper stories, and blogs.

If things are truly that bad, then why aren't more Americans leaving?

In the years 2000 through 2002, between 5,000 and 6,000 US residents migrated to Canada each year. Meanwhile, more than 11,000 Canadians moved south in 2003 -- and even more did so in 2001 and 2002.

So many people are moving into the United States that 20% of the US population was either born abroad or had at least one foreign-born parent. The Census Bureau reports that total migration from the United States to most other countries is little more than a few hundred per year. Even Canada, the largest "importer" of American expatriates, has fewer than a quarter-million US-born residents in total. There are more than 820,000 Canadian-born people living in the United States.
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Gongol.com -- posted 10.30.2004