Polls Prove that an overwhelming number of Americans Support Comprehensive Immigration Reform
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Polls Prove that an overwhelming number of Americans Support Comprehensive Immigration Reform

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May 8, 2010, 3:11 pm
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Polls Prove that an overwhelming number of Americans Support Comprehensive Immigration Reform
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by Moses Apsan, Esq.

May 8, 2010 – New York -- Not to be fooled by rumors and articles written without factual foundations and an undeniable agenda, an overwhelming amount of Americans in many polls for many years have made is clear that they want comprehensive immigration reform this year.

In 2010 as in prior years, voters want the President and Congress to move forward with a solution that legalizes the undocumented workforce, obliges them to pay taxes, protects our borders and restores the rule of law.

Following is an outline of recent opinion polls on immigration reform.

 

A 2010 Daily Kos/Research 2000 Poll

Do you favor or oppose Congress passing comprehensive immigration reform?

Favor 78 %   and Oppose 15 % Question: One version of immigration reform that people have discussed would do the following if passed into law; it would secure the border, crack down on employers who hire illegal immigrants, require illegal immigrants to register for legal immigration status, pay back taxes, and learn English in order to be eligible for U.S. citizenship. Do you favor or oppose Congress passing this version of immigration reform?  

 

December 2009 – America’s Voice National Poll (Benenson Strategy Group)

Benenson Strategy Group conducted a national poll from December 19 to 21, 2009 for America’s Voice, following up on questions asked in May 2009.

The December poll surveyed 800 likely voters and had a Sixty-Five Percent of Respondents Supported Congressional Action on Comprehensive Immigration Reform in 2010. According to the December poll, 65% of voters prefer for Congress to take up the immigration issue this year rather than wait until later. Sixty-six percent of respondents supported comprehensive immigration reform before even hearing details of the plan.

Support for reform continued to cut across party lines, with 69% of Democrats, 67% of independents, and 62% of Republicans supporting comprehensive reform. When given details, support for comprehensive reform climbed. Requiring undocumented immigrants to register with the government and meet certain conditions, including working, paying taxes and learning English in order to apply for citizenship, was supported by 87% in December. These findings show continued support for reform following similar polls in November 2008 and May 2009, even during the country’s harshest economic crisis in decades. [America’s Voice, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, December 2009]

A Majority of Voters Said the Issue Was Crucial Due to the Poor Economy and Preferred that Undocumented Immigrants Become Legal Taxpayers over a Deportation Approach. The sense of urgency has been bolstered by the poor economy. Fifty-five percent of respondents said that the poor economy makes it more crucial that Congress address immigration reform, as opposed to the 42% who believed it was not the right time. An overwhelming margin of voters, 67% to 28%, prefer that undocumented immigrants take steps to become legal taxpayers over an option to deport them because they are “taking jobs.” [America’s Voice, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, December 2009]

Sixty-Six Percent Support Requiring Undocumented Immigrants to Register and Work Towards Citizenship. When given details about what is included in comprehensive immigration reform, including access to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who register and meet state criteria, support remains strong and consistent. Roughly the same percentage of voters in May and December 2009, 66%, support a program that requires undocumented immigrants to register, meet certain requirements, and become legal taxpayers on their way to becoming full U.S. citizens. Only 22% of voters believed that those immigrants should be required to leave and 11% believe that they should be allowed to stay temporarily. [America’s Voice, Benenson Strategy Group Polls, December and May 2009]

 

On behalf of America’s Voice and the Center for American Progress Action Fund, Benenson Strategy Group conducted a poll of three battleground Congressional districts between May 27 and June 1, 2009.

The poll surveyed 500 likely voters each in Idaho’s 1st Congressional District,nAlabama’s 2nd Congressional District, and California’s 3rd Congressional District. The margin of error was ± 4.38% in each district.

A majority of voters in these districts supported comprehensive immigration reform and candidates who support reform. Nearly two-thirds of respondents in these districts supported comprehensive immigration reform when asked generically (65% in ID-1, 65% in AL-2 and 67% in CA-3), while support climbed to nearly 90% after the details of comprehensive reform were explained (88% in ID-1, 87% in AL-2, and 83% in CA-3). Respondents were also more likely to support Congressional candidates who championed comprehensive reform rather than those who opposed it (85% in ID-1, 83% in AL-2, 79% in CA-3). [America’s Voice, Center for American Progress Action Fund, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, June2009]  

A majority of voters in these districts supported a pathway to citizenship over deportation. Two thirds of respondents preferred a comprehensive approach to the status quo of continued enforcement and forced departure (65% over 34% in ID-1, 63% over 35% in AL-2, 63% over 34% in CA-3). A vast majority chose legalization of undocumented workers that included a pathway to citizenship, over deportation or temporary status (65% in ID-1, 62% in AL-2, 63% in CA-3). [America’s Voice, Center for American Progress Action Fund, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, June 2009]­­

These voters believed that comprehensive reform is good for taxpayers and the economyA majority of voters believed that comprehensive reform would be helpful and fair to taxpayers by making the undocumented into legal taxpayers. By a 3 to 1 margin, voters would rather turn undocumented immigrants into legal taxpayers than force th­em to leave because they are taking jobs (68% to 28% in ID-1, 65% to 31 in AL-2, 73% to 23%). [America’s Voice, Center for American Progress Action Fund, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, June 2009] ­

A majority of voters in these districts also believed the time for enacting comprehensive immigration reform is now. Seven in ten of these voters want Congress to act now on immigration. They said that the recession makes it more important that we address immigration and rejected the argument that the President and Congress should focus solely on other issues. [America’s Voice, Center for American Progress Action Fund, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, June 2009]

 

 

 

May 2009 - America’s Voice National Poll (Benenson Strategy Group)

On behalf of America’s Voice, Benenson Strategy Group conducted a national poll from May 9 to 12, 2009. The poll surveyed 1,000 likely voters and had a margin of error of 3.1%.

75% Of Respondents Supported Congressional Action On Immigration Reform In 2009; 57% Said The Issue Was Crucial Due To Economic Situation. According to a poll of 1,000 likely voters conducted by the Benenson Strategy Group, 75% of respondents believed Congress should tackle immigration reform in 2009. The sense of urgency was boosted by the poor economy. 57% of respondents said that the poor economy makes it more crucial that Congress address immigration reform as opposed to the 39% who believed it was not the right time. In general, voters support a member of Congress willing to tackle immigration more so than one who will not. [America’s Voice, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, 5/14/09]

68% Support Pathway To Citizenship For Undocumented Immigrants Including 62% of Republicans. Support for comprehensive immigration reform has remained stable since a previous poll taken in November 2008. Roughly the same percentage of voters, 68%, support a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants allowing them to register, meet certain requirements and become legal taxpayers. Support is bi-partisan, as 62% of Republicans support the same position. Only 20% of voters believed that those undocumented should be required to leave and 10% believe that they should be allowed to stay temporarily. [America’s Voice, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, 5/14/09]

 

71% of Voters Preferred That Illegal Immigrants Become Legal Taxpayers. An overwhelming margin of voters, 71% to 26% believed that illegal immigrants should take steps to become legal taxpayers. 71% of respondents also believe that those illegal immigrants should not be forced to leave and were not responsible for taking American jobs. [America’s Voice, Benenson Strategy Group Poll, 5/14/09]

The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press conducted a 2009 Values Survey.

The first part of the poll was conducted from March 31 to April 6, 2009 reaching 1,506 voters. The second poll was conducted from April 14 to April 21, 2009 reaching 1,507 voters. There was no reported margin of error in the topline report.

 

 

April 2009 - America’s Voice National Poll of Latino Voters (Bendixen

On behalf of America’s Voice, Bendixen & Associates conducted a national poll of 800 Latino voters in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Nevada, New York, New Mexico, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia from April 28 to May 5, 2009.  Interviews were conducted in Spanish and English and the margin of error was 3.5%.

Latino Voters Overwhelmingly Supported Obama; 83% Believed He Would “Do The Right Thing” For Immigration Reform. Latino voters across 13 states overwhelmingly believed President Obama’s campaign promise to pass comprehensive immigration reform. 72% of respondents believed it will happen in 2009. 75% of respondents rated Obama favorably when asked whether he was tackling the “issues and concerns of Hispanic families.” Furthermore, 83% of respondents believed Obama would “do the right thing” when passing comprehensive reform, only 10% said that he will “not do the right thing.”[America’s Voice, Bendixen & Associates, 5/18/09] 

Only 23% Of Latino Voters Trusted Congressional Republicans To Tackle Immigration Reform. Latino voters responded unfavorably towards Congressional Republicans when asked about their approach to comprehensive immigration reform. Only 23% of respondents trusted Republicans to tackle the issue, while 69% trusted Democrats in Congress. [America’s Voice, Bendixen & Associates, 5/18/09] 

87% Of Latino Voters Would Not Vote For Congressional Candidate Who Supported Deportation. Latino voters believed immigration was a personal issue, 82% of respondents said the issue was “personally important.” Furthermore, voters responded unfavorably towards a Congressional candidate who did not support a pathway to citizenship for those undocumented. 87% of Latino voters surveyed would not support a candidate who favored deportation for undocumented immigrants. [America’s Voice, Bendixen & Associates, 5/18/09]

89% Of Respondents Supported Path To Citizenship; Only 4% Believed Illegal Immigrants Should Leave. 89% of respondents believed undocumented immigrants in the country should be given a pathway to citizenship, while only 4% supported immediate deportation. [America’s Voice, Bendixen & Associates, 5/18/09]

 

April 2009 - Washington Post/ABC News Poll

The Washington Post-ABC News conducted a telephone poll of 1,072 adults from April 21 to 24, 2009.

The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus three points. 61% Of Respondents Supported a Program To Give Illegal Immigrants In United States The Right To Live Here Legally After Paying Fines And Meeting Other Requirements. To the question“Would you support or oppose a program giving ILLEGAL immigrants now living in the United States the right to live here LEGALLY if they pay a fine and meet other requirements?” 61% of respondents said yes and 35% said no. [Washington Post-ABC News Poll, 4/21-24/09] 5 

Support For Legalization Increased Over Previous Years. When asked the same question in June of 2007, 52% supported legalization and 44% opposed. In December 2007, 49% supported and 46% opposed. [Washington Post-ABC News Poll, 4/21-24/09]

 

March 2009 - Washington Post/ABC News Poll

The Washington Post-ABC News telephone survey of 1,000 adults was conducted from March 26 to 29, 2009 and the results were published on April 30, 2009. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus three points. 

61% Of Respondents Supported Giving Undocumented Immigrants The Right To Live In The U.S. “If They Pay A Fine And Meet Other Requirements.” In 2007, roughly 49% of people supported giving undocumented immigrants the right to live in the country; that number has grown by 12% in 2009. 

59% of Republicans support this position, up 17% from 2007, while 68% of Democrats expressed their support, up only 9% from 2007. [ABC News, 4/30/09]

A majority of Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Moderates and Conservatives Supported Legalization. The Washington Post polling showed that support for legalization of undocumented immigrants was high despite political affiliation. 70% of liberals, 68% of Democrats, and 59% Republicans and Independents alike supported an amnesty program. [ABC News, 4/30/09] 

 

March 2009 - Washington Post/ABC News Poll

The Washington Post-ABC News telephone survey of 1,000 adults was conducted from March 26 to 29, 2009 and the results were published on April 30, 2009. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 

61% Of Respondents Supported Giving Undocumented Immigrants The Right To Live In The U.S. “If They Pay A Fine And Meet Other Requirements.” In 2007, roughly 49% of people supported giving undocumented immigrants the right to live in the country; that number has grown by 12% in 2009.

59% of Republicans support this position, up 17% from 2007, while 68% of Democrats expressed their support, up only 9% from 2007. [ABC News, 4/30/09] 

A majority of Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Moderatesand Conservatives Supported Legalization. The Washington Post polling showed that support for legalization of undocumented immigrants was high despite political affiliation. 70% of liberals, 68% of Democrats, and 59% Republicans and Independents alike supported an amnesty program. [ABC News, 4/30/09]­­ There is almost universal support for immigration reform, and it cuts across party lines. In fact, independents (85/12) are more likely to support comprehensive immigration reform than even Democrats (79/16). Republicans are just a hair behind (77/14). Support is strong across all age, race, and geographic groups.

There is no reason to holdup immigration reform past 2010. The loud outrage of a xenophobic and racist minority should not be a reason to impede the will of the American people.  Certainly it is the right thing to do ethically and morally.

As it turns out, the racist anti-immigrant Arizonan law that was written and proposed by white supremacist may have done it’s duty by making it quite clear to America that unless comprehensive immigration reform is passed, this country may eventually fall into the arms of fascist groups that are growing in power even as I write.

Author: Moises Apsan
Attorney with over 32 years of experience. Past president Federal Bar Association NJ Chapter (1997-2002). Offices in Astoria, NY, Newark, NJ. Tel: 877-873-8510 http://www.apsanlaw.com and drmoises.com
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