If it's in the News, it's in our Polls. Public opinion polling since 2003.


Iowa: 73% Support E-Verify Legislation

A bill pending in the Iowa legislature to help control illegal immigration by requiring employers to use the E-Verify system has overwhelming support from the state’s voters.

A new telephone and online survey by Rasmussen Reports and NumbersUSA finds that 73% of Likely Iowa Voters believe the state should mandate that all employers use the federal electronic E-Verify system to help ensure that they hire only legal workers for U.S. jobs. Only 14% oppose mandating E-Verify, while another 10% are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

In February, Iowa’s state Senate passed a measure that would require use of the E-Verify system; that legislation awaits action by Iowa’s House of Representatives. Majorities of every political category of Iowa voters – 89% of Republicans, 51% of Democrats and 74% of voters not affiliated with either major party – believe the state should mandate E-Verify.

"This E-Verify bill would deter the record-breaking numbers of illegal aliens crossing the southern border from settling in Iowa," said James Massa, CEO of NumbersUSA. “By shutting off the jobs magnet that draws migrants to seek illegal employment, this bill would protect Iowa's hard-working citizens and legal immigrants."

Requiring the use of E-Verify is popular nationwide, with 69% of U.S. Likely Voters favoring it in the most recent Rasmussen Reports Immigration Index survey.

“E-Verify is incredibly easy to use, and thousands of Iowa businesses have already enrolled voluntarily," said Massa. “Employers simply log in to the online portal and input a few pieces of information from a newly hired employee's I-9 form, which they're already required to collect by federal law. The entire system is highly accurate – and clears more than 98% of hires to work either instantly or within 24 hours.”

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it’s in the news, it’s in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 925 Iowa Likely Voters was conducted on April 5-9, 2023 by Rasmussen Reports and NumbersUSA. 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 Iowa survey found a consensus in favor of requiring E-Very across all demographic categories – 79i% of men, 69% of women, 73% of whites and 75% of minority voters support the state requiring employers to use the federal electronic E-Verify system to help ensure that they hire only legal workers for U.S. jobs.

Among other findings of the Rasmussen Reports/Numbers USA survey of Iowa voters:

– Seventy percent (70%) agree that hiring illegal workers harms legal workers by reducing pay, diminishing working conditions, and making fewer jobs available to Iowans, including 47% who Strongly Agree. Only 26% disagree.

– Seventy-one percent (71%) would support a program that allowed state and local law enforcement agencies to partner with federal immigration authorities to better capture, detain, hold and deport criminal illegal aliens, including 48% who would Strongly Support such a program. Twenty-one percent (21%) would be opposed.

– When businesses say they are having trouble finding Iowans to take jobs in construction, manufacturing, hospitality, and other service work, 61% believe it is better for businesses to raise pay and try harder to recruit non-working Iowans even if it causes prices to rise. Just 18% think it is better for the government to bring in new foreign workers to help keep business costs and prices down. Another 21% are not sure.

– Seventy percent (70%) believe Iowa’s “Dual Enrollment” program –  a workforce development program where high school students can take college courses with subsidized tuition – should be limited to U.S. citizens and immigrants with lawful work authorization. Only 20% think “Dual Enrollment” should continue to be open to illegal aliens.

– Fifty-eight percent (58%) would support a state law to charge a fee for money transfers out of the United States to help reduce remittances – money sent by foreign workers to their home countries.

– Thirty-seven percent (37%) approve of President Joe Biden’s job performance, including 20% who Strongly Approve. Sixty-one percent (61%) disapprove of Biden’s performance as president, including  54% who Strongly Disapprove.

– Forty-nine percent (49%) say that, if their state representative votes against the bill mandating E-Verify, they would be less likely to support them in the future. Only 20% would be more likely to support their state representative for voting against E-Verify, while 22% say it doesn’t matter. While Iowa Democrats are almost evenly divided on this question, majorities of both Republicans (59%) and unaffiliated voters (52%) would be less likely to support a state representative who votes against the E-Verify bill.

– Sixty-four percent (64%) agree that, if the measure requiring employers to use E-Verify becomes law, any business that refuses to comply should lose its business license to operate in Iowa, including 32% who Strongly Agree. Just 27% disagree. Majorities of every political category – 77% of Republicans, 51% of Democrats and 61% of unaffiliated voters in Iowa – at least somewhat agree that businesses which refuse to comply with an E-Verify law should lose their Iowa state licenses.

"Iowans of all political persuasions agree that jobs should only go to legal residents," said NumbersUSA’s Massa. "Mandatory E-Verify is the best way to ensure that happens."

Nearly two-thirds of American voters believe the situation along the Mexican border should be called an “invasion.”

Preventing illegal immigrants from voting is very important, according to a majority of voters, who agree with Elon Musk that Democrats are encouraging immigration as part of a plan to gain a “permanent majority.”

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

Please sign up for the Rasmussen Reports daily e-mail update (it’s free) or follow us on Facebook. Let us keep you up to date with the latest public opinion news.

The survey of 925 Iowa Likely Voters was conducted on April 5-9, 2024 by Rasmussen Reports and NumbersUSA. 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.

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.