Tuesday, February 18, 2020
The Rasmussen Reports Immigration Index for the week of February 9-13, 2020 has fallen back to 102.4 from 105.8 the week before.
The Index is based on a series of questions designed to determine whether voters are moving toward an immigration system that encourages more immigration to the United States or a one that reduces the level of immigration here. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
All surveys are compared to a baseline – set the week of December 2-6, 2019 - which has been given an Index of 100. A weekly finding moving up over 100 indicates growing support for a more expansive immigration system. A weekly index number falling below 100 indicates increased support for a more restrictive immigration system.
The Immigration Index will be updated every Tuesday at noon Eastern.
Among the findings in the latest survey, 41% of Likely U.S. Voters say the government is doing too little to reduce illegal border crossings and visitor overstays, while 34% think it’s doing too much. Eighteen percent (18%) rate the level of action as about right.
The sharp public political differences over illegal immigration are explained in part by the results of this question: 62% of Republicans think the government is doing too little to combat it, while 56% of Democrats say the government is doing too much. Among voters not affiliated with either major party, 41% say the government is doing too little to reduce illegal immigration vs. 29% who say it’s doing too much.
Sixty-eight percent (68%) of all voters still feel the government should mandate that employers use the federal electronic E-Verify system to help ensure they hire only legal workers for U.S. jobs. Just 19% disagree, while 14% are undecided.
Fifty-eight percent (58%) believe it is better for the country if U.S. businesses raise pay and try harder to recruit non-working Americans even if it causes prices to rise. Only 26% disagree and think it's better for America if the government brings in new foreign workers to help keep business costs and prices down. Sixteen percent (16%) are not sure which option is better.
Legal immigration has averaged around a million annually in recent years, but a plurality (47%) of voters continues to believe that the government should be adding no more than 750,000 new immigrants each year, with 32% who say it should be fewer than 500,000. Thirty-eight percent (38%) favor adding one million or more legal newcomers per year, including 12% who say the figure should be higher than 1.5 million. Fourteen percent (14%) are not sure.
Fifty-seven percent (57%) favor allowing legal immigrants to bring only a spouse and minor children with them. Thirty-three percent (33%) want to allow them to bring in other adult relatives as well in a process that can include extended family and their spouses’ families. Ten percent (10%) are not sure.
The Census Bureau projects that current immigration policies are responsible for most U.S. population growth and will add 75 million people over the next 40 years. Most voters still want to slow that growth. In terms of the effect on the overall quality of life in the United States, 35% want to continue immigration-driven population growth at the current levels. But 42% favor slowing down immigration-driven population growth, while 14% want to have no such population growth at all.
Rasmussen Reports is a media company specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion information.
We conduct public opinion polls on a variety of topics to inform our audience on events in the news and other topics of interest. To ensure editorial control and independence, we pay for the polls ourselves and generate revenue through the sale of subscriptions, sponsorships, and advertising. Nightly polling on politics, business and lifestyle topics provides the content to update the Rasmussen Reports web site many times each day. If it's in the news, it's in our polls. Additionally, the data drives a daily update newsletter and various media outlets across the country.
Some information, including the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and commentaries are available for free to the general public. Subscriptions are available for $4.95 a month or 34.95 a year that provide subscribers with exclusive access to more than 20 stories per week on upcoming elections, consumer confidence, and issues that affect us all. For those who are really into the numbers, Platinum Members can review demographic crosstabs and a full history of our data.
To learn more about our methodology, click here.