Majority Supports Residency and Citizenship Pathway for Unauthorized Immigrants, Muted Support to Ease Path for Future Legal Immigration


According to the latest Reason-Rupe poll, 70 percent of Americans think the 11 million unauthorized immigrants currently living in the United States should be allowed to stay. A majority (55 percent) also believes unauthorized immigrants should eventually be allowed to apply for citizenship if they meet certain requirements. Twenty-seven percent favor deporting unauthorized immigrants back to their home countries, 11 percent support offering temporary legal residency and 4 percent favor offering legal residency without a path to citizenship.

Americans are less supportive of making it easier for future immigrants to enter the country legally: 40 percent favor raising the visa caps for high-skilled and low skilled workers; 44 percent want to maintain the status quo, and 11 percent want to lower the number of visa caps distributed annually.

Support for offering residency and pathway to citizenship is correlated with partisanship, education, and youth, detailed here. However, partisan differences are attenuated when accounting for Americans' assumptions about immigrants' economic impact, detailed here.

Interestingly, there is little partisan disagreement when it comes to easing the path for new high- and low-skilled workers seeking visas.

Read the full report here: Reason-Rupe Feb 2013 Full Immigration Findings

Nationwide telephone poll conducted February 21-25 2013 interviewed 1002 adults on both mobile (502) and landline (500) phones, with a margin of error +/- 3.8%. Columns may not add up to 100% due to rounding. Full poll results found here. Full methodology can be found here*. **A full analysis of the poll's immigration results can be found* *here**.*