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Rasmussen Reports Weekly Immigration Index - Week Ending February 20, 2020

The Rasmussen Reports Immigration Index for the week of February 16-20, 2020 has fallen to 99.7, down from 102.4 the week before and a high of 105.8 the week prior to that.

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.

Crosstabstopline responses and historical data are also available to the public.

The Immigration Index will be updated every Tuesday at noon Eastern.

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Among the findings in the latest survey, 44% of Likely U.S. Voters say the government is doing too little to reduce illegal border crossings and visitor overstays, while 31% 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: 63% of Republicans think the government is doing too little to combat it, while 51% of Democrats say the government is doing too much. Among voters not affiliated with either major party, 47% say the government is doing too little to reduce illegal immigration vs. 28% who say it’s doing too much.

Sixty-six percent (66%) 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 15% are undecided.

Sixty-one percent (61%) 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 24% disagree and think it's better for America if the government brings in new foreign workers to help keep business costs and prices down. Fifteen percent (15%) are not sure which option is better.

Just 28% of voters feel that Congress should increase the number of foreign workers taking higher-skill U.S. jobs. Fifty-nine percent (59%) say the country already has enough talented people to train and recruit for most of those jobs. Thirteen percent (13%) are undecided.

Legal immigration has averaged around a million annually in recent years, but nearly half (48%) believe the government should be adding no more than 750,000 new immigrants each year, with 33% who say it should be fewer than 500,000. Thirty-seven percent (37%) favor adding one million or more legal newcomers per year, including 11% who say the figure should be higher than 1.5 million. Sixteen percent (16%) 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, 33% want to continue immigration-driven population growth at the current levels. But 43% favor slowing down immigration-driven population growth, while 13% want to have no such population growth at all. Eleven percent (11%) are undecided.

The survey of 1,250 Likely U.S. Voters was conducted February 16-20, 2020 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.  Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

The survey of 1,250 Likely U.S. Voters was conducted February 16-20, 2020 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

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