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Rasmussen Reports Weekly Immigration Index - Week Ending February 27, 2020

The Rasmussen Reports Immigration Index for the week of February 23-27, 2020 has risen to 101.6, from 99.7 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.

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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With the media highlighting the Trump administration’s increased enforcement efforts, the number of Likely U.S. Voters who feel the government is doing too little to reduce illegal border crossings and visitor overstays is down to 39%. Thirty-four percent (34%) say it is doing too much. Nineteen percent (19%) rate the level of action as about right.

Little changed from week to week is the sizable 68% who 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. Twenty-one percent (21%) disagree, while 11% are undecided.

Also generally unchanged from past surveys is the 57% of voters who favor giving lifetime work permits to most of the approximately two million illegal residents who came to this country when they were minors, with 34% who Strongly Favor. Thirty-six percent (36%) are opposed, including 18% who are Strongly Opposed.

But just 44% favor giving lifetime work permits to most of the estimated 12 million illegal residents of all ages who currently reside in the United States, with 22% who Strongly Favor it. Forty-nine percent (49%) remain opposed, including 30% who are Strongly Opposed.

Legal immigration has averaged around a million annually in recent years, but 45% of voters believe 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 11% who say the figure should be higher than 1.5 million. Sixteen percent (16%) are not sure.

Similarly consistent from week to week is the 60% who think legal immigrants should only be allowed to bring their spouse and minor children with them. Just 29% favor allowing these immigrants to eventually bring in other adult relatives in a process than can include extended family and their spouses’ families which has been U.S. immigration policy for years. Eleven percent (11%) are undecided.

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, 34% want to continue immigration-driven population growth at the current levels. But 45% favor slowing down immigration-driven population growth, while 13% want to have no such population growth at all.

The survey of 1,250 Likely U.S. Voters was conducted February 23-27, 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.

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