April 30th, 2010
11:41 AM ET
12 years ago

Natl. Poll: More favor than oppose Arizona immigration law

Washington (CNN) - Nearly four in ten Americans support Arizona's new immigration law while three in ten say they oppose it, according to a new national poll.

A Gallup survey released Thursday indicates that 39 percent of the public says from they know or have heard about the new law, they support it, with 30 percent opposed and 31 percent saying they have not heard of the new law or have no opinion.

The poll was conducted April 27-28. Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer signed the legislation into law on April 23. The law requires immigrants to carry their alien registration documents at all times and requires police to question people if there is reason to suspect they are in the United States illegally. The measure also makes it a state crime to live in or travel through Arizona illegally. The laws has ignited protests in the state and across the country and some are urging economic boycotts of Arizona.

According to the survey, nearly eight out of ten Americans have heard about the law. Of those, 51 percent support the measure and 39 percent oppose the law.

The poll suggests a partisan divide, with 27 percent of Democrats supporting the law, 45 percent opposed and nearly three out of ten not hearing of the new measure or undecided. Sixty-two percent of Republicans questioned say they favor the law, with 14 percent opposed and 24 percent unaware of the measure or undecided. Thirty-seven percent of Independents say they support the law, with 29 percent opposed and one in three not hearing about the new measure or unsure.

"That gap is a reflection of how Democrats and Republicans feel about illegal immigrants themselves, not just the new law," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "In a March CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll, two-thirds of Democrats said they sympathized with illegal immigrants and their families. Only four in ten Republicans said they felt that way."

The Gallup poll was conducted by telephone, with 1,013 national adults questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.

Filed under: Arizona • Immigration • Poll • Popular Posts
soundoff (206 Responses)
  1. Perry

    I bet no Hispanics agree with the new law. It is always easy to agree with something as long as it only affects the other guy.

    But as long as any one's freedom is threatened, all of our freedom is threatened. Today it is Hispanics, tomorrow it is you.

    Wake up people.

    April 30, 2010 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  2. Marc

    How many people supported the War in Iraq (regardless if it was properly declared or not) thanks to those 'WMD' and 'Al Qaeda links' excuses?
    How many people supported the 'The fundamentals of the Economy are strong' line?
    NOW that the law was approved and signed and not yet being put in motion/action, you can say anything and think anything about it. That Arizona has the right and obligation to deal with the problems that illegal immigration brings to the state it is more than obvious.
    The problem, that the Arizona legislature recognized and is trying to take care of it BEFORE the law becames valid, are the attacks to Constitutional rights of legal immigrants and American citizens of Hispanic Ancestry (OK, and Constitutional rights of the illegal immigrants as well, since the Constitution applies to everybody in the USA, whether he or she is legally in the land or not).

    April 30, 2010 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  3. Dan Borderman

    The "Shot heard around the world" had to be fired somewhere. We in Arizona have had enough killing, theft and kidnappings. America was founded on immigration and we still support that ideal, BUT committing a crime (by not registering and existing under the radar) is not the way to start your new life. Supporting smugglers and coyotes is not the way to better yourself.

    The rest of the USA needs to come here and live for a while. Your smug opinions would change a bit.

    April 30, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  4. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    It dosnt matter if they favor or oppose it this bill is law and we have to accept it just like the health care bill except this bill was made law by a majority of the people unlike the health care bill .

    April 30, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  5. Brink

    Why not do a poll on the following questions: "Who in their right mind, if they had any viable alternative, choose to live in, or travel to, the State of Arizona?"

    April 30, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Gallup I sure don't know who are where you do your polling but I think the majority of americans doen't agree with that racist bill that AZ passed into law. Boycott will take a major hit on their economy until they recend that frigging law.

    April 30, 2010 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  7. Laura, Paulden AZ

    It is so very easy for all the pundits to criticize this new law...they don't have to live here everyday. They don't walk into an emergency room filled with illegals who speak no English and take up space and time that doctors should be spending with American citizens.

    That is just one avenue of how illegals affect the lives of everyday Arizonians...our young people can't find jobs because they are still being given to people with phoney papers and/or stolen ss numbers. Yes, people many illegals are stealing wallets from kids at schools and taking their social security cards...I won't let my son carry his to school.

    That is just a few things that make us who deal with illegals on a day to day basis glad that we now have a governor (unlike good old Janet who did nothing) who is putting us first for a change...a change I can believe in....(not the Obama change).

    April 30, 2010 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  8. Chris

    AZ did the right thing. Look at CA and Los Angeles. Prime real estate, yet nearly bankrupt due to all of the latinos/mexicans here illegally and mooching off the government and white people.

    April 30, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  9. Kenneth of Minneapolis

    Polls are a joke....If the pollsters know the political leanings of the person being called, then the poll is skewed.....If I want a poll showing 75% disapprove, I will call numbers that from history, will get the results that I want.

    April 30, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  10. Me! In Houston, Texas

    Polls mean nothing.
    Polls, ALL POLLS,
    The ones that make me feel good
    And the ones that make me feel bad
    I have never participated in any of these polls.
    Have you?
    Do you know ANYBODY who has participated in any of these polls?
    Who is asking the questions?
    What questions are they asking?
    Have you ever heard of Frank Luntz?
    Even this poll is pointless

    April 30, 2010 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  11. Bob in PA

    And this is a surprise ?

    I also sympathize with illegal immigrants, but there is no reason that they shouldn't have visited the US Embassy in Mexico and arranged for legally crossing the border. It's time to send them home with that message.

    I am sick of the talking heads and politicians that yell racism, racial profiling, and Nazis. I suppose If a policeman pulls someone over for speeding, runs their license and name, and then finds out they are wanted for a hit and run accident in another state that would be profiling of some sort. Its time to grow up people.

    April 30, 2010 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  12. Dano

    It's a shame that illegal immigration has been mostly ignored for the last 30 years by politicians afraid of offending their constituents and must be addressed by the states that bear the brunt of the unending flow of ilegal aliens. I believe this law will probably be found to be unconstitutional, if not now, then in a few years when the statistics show that the vast majority of people stopped and forced to "show their papers" are brown skinned and spanish speaking. In my opinion, the best way to stop or slow illegal immigration is to go after the companies that employ illegals. When there are no jobs for them, they will stop risking their lives to get here.

    April 30, 2010 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  13. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    When the entirety of a problem is caused by one particular group, it only makes sense to keep an eye on that group. Fortunately, most Americans understand this; unfortunately, Obama and the Beltway Democrats don't.

    But then, Obama and the Beltway Democrats keep showing that they don't understand Americans very well on any issue.

    April 30, 2010 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  14. YY

    The AZ law is unconstitutional. Period. Perhaps folks should read it. Both the constitution and the actual law as written. It will not stand. Now maybe we should focus on getting real immigration reform? something executable and constitutional to address these serious problems? Oh, i forgot, stirring up rage and anger is essential to GOP election strategy. No help there. Dems? can you pull this together?

    April 30, 2010 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  15. Fitz in Texas

    Never been to Arizona before, BUT this year our family is planning a FAMILY VACATION TO ARIZONA. Just our little way of showing our support for Gov. Jan Brewer.

    Any you Libs that oppose what Gov. Jan Brewer had the guts to do. Try reading the immigration laws in Mexico. I posted just one to peak your interest.

    *****Foreigners may be barred from the country if their presence upsets "the equilibrium of the national demographics," when foreigners are deemed detrimental to "economic or national interests," when they do not behave like good citizens in their own country, when they have broken Mexican laws, and when "they are not found to be physically or mentally healthy." (Article 37)*****

    April 30, 2010 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  16. Randy, San Francisco

    As a non-white who was born in the USA, do I need to carry my US passport when visiting Arizona? If so, I will avoid any future travel to Arizona or any state with similar laws.

    April 30, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  17. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    "What's truly mind-boggling is that anyone at all thinks that public opinion on the subject matters. That's not how the Constitution works."


    "The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States,...

    "The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof,...

    Constitutionally, public opinion should matter, as that's what's supposed to control who gets elected to Congress. Though I agree that Obama and the far-left ramming through the passage of Obamacare, despite the express objections of a majority of Americans, makes me wonder.

    April 30, 2010 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  18. Anonymous

    Hey Future expat

    If you get pulled over speeding, don't you have to produce a drivers license? I have to produce ID all the time and legal visitors to this and every other country are required to have their Visa's etc on hem. Its the law. I guess you don't care about the rule of law so:

    I'll buy you a ticket wherever you want to go. The sooner the better

    April 30, 2010 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  19. 8 Years of the Bush Error = Recession and Record Unemployment for ? Years.

    We have a Constitution that protects minorities from the tyranny of the majority.

    April 30, 2010 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  20. Steve- Illinois

    April 30th, 2010 11:54 am ET

    Maybe if the survey question was:

    "Do you believe that the police should be able to stop a "suspicious-looking person" on the street and ask for their papers?"

    Betcha the answer is 80 plus per cent "NO".

    The police already have the authority to do this.

    April 30, 2010 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  21. Poll Me!!!

    @carol April 30th, 2010 11:50 am ET
    Gee, how many Hispanics do you think were included in the poll?

    April 30, 2010 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  22. Donny

    You have had a few drinks and got pulled over while driving home. The police thinks they have probably cause that you are breaking the law, you would have to prove that you are not breaking the law (breath test). The same applies for illegal immigrants. If you have nothing to hide, then the police can't do anything else to you besides asking you to present some sort of documentation. Yes, it's unvoidable that racial profiling will happen in some cases, no law is 100% perfect. The alternative would be turning a blind eye on the person driving drunk and potentially can hurt someone, or letting an illegal immigrant living here tax free, while sucking our resources dry.

    April 30, 2010 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  23. Benher

    People in this country just don't realize that the system makes it extremely difficult for Mexican immigrants to do the right thing and apply for legal status in this country. It can take upwards of ten years for an immigrant to go through the entire process of becoming a legal U S citizen unless you're coming in from a group that has been identified as needing immediate relief, such as Soviet Jews in prior years, or some other persecuted group. If the government had some sort of program for seasonal workers to legally work in the US, a lot of these problems would go away. As for taking jobs from our youth or citizens, no one from here is going to work in the conditions these poeple work in or receive the pay they do. Business knows that this is cheap labor and if if they have to start paying out realistic salaries, the price for many products is going to go up and then the American people are going to gripe because things are more expensive. You can't have it both ways. Most of the immigrants here are not dangerous. The mayhem on the border is due to the drug trade that many Americans perpetuate because they want their pot or cocaine. If there's a market for something, there are going to be people willing to provide it at all costs, whether it be in lives or destruction. Make these drugs legal and regulate them and the drug wars will decrease. Of course that will never happen. We Americans like to pretend we're so wonderful, but we often indulge in all these vices that these problems stem from. Being an American born citizen of Mexican descent, I'm curoius as to what documents I need to carry if I ever visit Arizona, not that I have a burning desire to do so. All I ever carry is a driver's license. Does that mean I don't have sufficient papers and cen be arrested? All of you people in favor of this law remember that the same thing happened in Nzai Germany and Communist Russia..."papers please." If we as a society are so willing to let a group of people be persecuted this way, don't complain when it happens to you.

    April 30, 2010 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  24. Steve- Illinois

    I want to know who is being polled. How about polling a totally hispanic community and see what the favorability of the law is then. You can take these poll numbers and shove it.
    Maybe if you polled child molesters they would be in favor of child molesting!
    Bank robbers would be in favor of robbing banks!
    So what???
    How do you suppose the poll would come out if you only polled people that have been victims of crimes committed by illegal aliens?

    April 30, 2010 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  25. sine

    crap-talk about stripping freedom and liberty away. Those on the right love to talk about liberty and freedom...but now we now liberty and freedom apply to those who are lighter than brown.

    April 30, 2010 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
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