Wednesday, August 14, 2019
Pew polling results show most Americans support undocumented immigrants and asylum seekers, parties divide
The Pew Research Center finds a clear majority disapproves of the handling of the immigrant situation and takes a very different view of what to do about it than Trump:
Nearly two-thirds of Americans (65%) say the federal government is doing a very bad (38%) or somewhat bad (27%) job dealing with the increased number of people seeking asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border. . . . In assessing the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border, the public views several goals as important. But more people give priority to addressing the backlog of asylum cases and improving conditions for asylum seekers than to making it harder — or easier — for asylum seekers to be granted legal status.
In views of the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border, 86% say it is either very (52%) or somewhat (34%) important to increase the number of judges handling asylum cases. Nearly as many (82%) say it is important to provide safe and sanitary conditions for asylum seekers once they arrive in the U.S, including 52% who say this is very important.
The report also finds:
- Broad public support for path to legal status for undocumented immigrants.Nearly three-quarters of Americans (72%) say undocumented immigrants should be allowed to stay in the U.S. legally if certain conditions are met. This is a modest decline from 77% in March 2017, with most of the change occurring among Republicans.
- Most Americans say people who are in the U.S. illegally are no more likely than citizens to commit serious crimes. Nearly seven-in-ten (69%) say this. Large majorities also say undocumented immigrants mostly fill the jobs that American citizens don’t want (77%) and are as honest and hardworking as American citizens (73%).
- As many agree with the Republican Party as with the Democratic Party on illegal immigration. Among the public overall, 40% say they agree with the Democratic Party’s policies on illegal immigration and 39% agree with the GOP’s positions; 19% don’t agree with either party on this issue. Republicans are more likely than Democrats to agree with their own party on illegal immigration.