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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Immigration as a Barrier to GOP Hispanic Support

Resurgent Republic reports that although the GOP has some opportunities among Hispanics, one issue is a particular barrier:
  • Republican positions on immigration reform continue to be at odds with the overwhelming majority of Hispanic voters.
    • Majorities of Hispanic voters support immigration reform legislation that includes earned legalization for undocumented immigrants who are already here. When asked which type of immigration reform legislation they prefer among three options, “A bill that includes border security, a temporary-worker program, and earned legalization for undocumented immigrants who are already here, because any solution to the immigration problem much deal with all of the problems with our immigration system” is the top choice in each state—55 percent in Florida, 53 percent in Colorado, and 50 percent in New Mexico.

    The second choice is “A bill that includes border security and a temporary-worker program, because we have to address the need for immigrant workers if we are ever going to get control of the border” – 20 percent in Florida, 23 percent in Colorado, and 24 percent in New Mexico.

    The third choice is “A bill that concentrates on border security but does not include a temporary-worker program or earned legalization for undocumented immigrants who are already here, because we have to secure the border first” – with just 19 percent in Florida, 15 percent in Colorado, and 17 percent in New Mexico.

    • Large majorities of Hispanics in each state support earned legalization for undocumented immigrants with no criminal background who meet strict guidelines like registration, paying a fine, and learning English. Florida Hispanics support earned legalization with these conditions by 67 to 27 percent, compared to 65 to 30 percent in Colorado, and 58 to 33 percent in New Mexico.
    • By large margins, Hispanics in each state support a version of the Dream Act--allowing the children of undocumented immigrants to attain legal residency if they complete college or serve in the military. Florida Hispanics support this policy by 67 to 28 percent, compared to 63 to 30 percent in Colorado, and 59 to 33 percent in New Mexico.
    • Florida Hispanics say that the federal government should focus on the economy right now, but those in Colorado and New Mexico say that now is a good time to pass immigration reform. Florida Hispanics say now is not a good time to pass immigration reform by a slim 48 to 45 percent margin, while those in Colorado and New Mexico say it is a good time by margins of 50 to 43 percent and 51 to 40 percent, respectively.
    • Republicans in Congress take the lion’s share of the blame for the government’s failure to pass immigration reform over the last few years, especially in Colorado and New Mexico. In Florida, 38 percent blame Congressional Republicans, while 31 percent blame Congressional Democrats or President Obama. In Colorado, 48 percent blame Republicans and 27 percent blame Obama or the Democrats. And in New Mexico, 46 percent blame Republicans, and 23 percent blame Obama or the Democrats.