After a lengthy (and illegal) delay, the latest Quarterly Publication of Individuals, Who Have Chosen To Expatriate, as Required By Section 6039G will be printed in the Federal Register for Thursday, 14 February 2013.
It contains forty five names. This brings 2012’s total number of “published expatriates” to 932, or little more than half of the number seen in 2011.
Journalists who may write about this list in the next few days should be warned against misinterpreting it as a complete list of people who turned in their U.S. passports last year. The Federal Bureau of Investigation tells us that 4,385 Americans renounced citizenship in 2012, and another 167 in January 2013 alone — and that number does not even include people relinquishing citizenship or abandoning long-held green cards, both acts which should result in one’s name appearing in the Federal Register. I am aware of more than a dozen public figures who have given up U.S. citizenship in the past year, almost all for the purpose of running in non-U.S. elections, but only four of their names have been published. South Korea recorded 2,158 of their citizens giving up U.S. passports or green cards in 2011, and numerous anecdotal reports from Washington and from Seoul suggest that this “reverse migration” accelerated rather than slowed in 2012.