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International City Of Love? D.C. Ranks Fourth For Mixed-Nativity Marriages

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D.C.'s reputation as an international city was reinforced this week, with the release of a Census report (pdf) that shows as many as 12.4 percent of married-couple households in the District include one foreign-born spouse.

"The number of mixed-nativity married-couple households corresponds with the increase in immigration to the United States over the last several decades," said Elizabeth Grieco, chief of the Census Bureau's Foreign-Born Population Branch. "As the immigrant population has grown, so has the chance that a native-born person will meet and marry a foreign-born spouse."

That is especially true in the nation's capital, where its many embassies and diverse population draw immigrants from around the world.

The only states with higher rates of mixed nativity married-couple households were California (13.4 percent), Nevada (13.8 percent), and Hawaii (16.2 percent). The national average was 7.4 percent.

The foreign-born spouse in a mixed nativity couple is more likely to be a wife (55 percent) than a husband (45 percent), according to the Census data. They're also more likely to be naturalized U.S. citizens (61 percent) than noncitizens (39 percent).

State-by-state data for households where both spouses were foreign-born was not available, but the national rate was 13.2 percent.

Earlier this year, the Census issued a report that showed more than 1 in 4 residents in the National Capital Region spoke a language other than English in the home.


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