Andrew Malcolm corrects an immigration myth in a column for

Everybody knows who’s immigrating into the United States. Or thinks they do.

Turns out, we’re all wrong about the nationalities and the characteristics of those born elsewhere in the world and moving into the United States for a variety of reasons including family and opportunities.

They’re from Latin America, surely? Poor, uneducated? Uh, not really.

Then Europe? Nope.

Oh, then, they’re from the Middle East fleeing the wars, turmoil and religious strife? Buzzer. Wrong again.

A new study of foreign-born United States residents since 2010 finds that today they are the most numerous here in more than a century. The largest number among them is not poor, not uneducated. And they’re from Asia. …

… Frey’s analysis of the 2017 numbers found that of those arriving in the last eight years, 41 percent said they came from Asia, while Latin America, once the overwhelming source of immigrants, produced only 39 percent.

And it turns out, contrary to conventional wisdom, the new wave of immigrants is much better-educated than previous ones. About 45 percent now have college degrees, which is about half again larger than the 30 percent in the previous nine years.

This augurs better than often understood for providing the vast volume of skilled workers needed to keep the U.S. economy growing. But because it’s counter-intuitive, it’s unlikely to figure in the midterm election campaigns now underway.