July 13th, 2010
04:43 PM ET
13 years ago

Poll: Plurality oppose lawsuit against Arizona immigration law

Washington (CNN) - More Americans oppose rather than support the federal government's lawsuit against Arizona's tough new immigration law, according to a new poll.

A Pew Research Center/National Journal survey indicates that 45 percent of the public disapproves of the Justice Department's move last week to block implementation of the law, with 36 percent approving of the action, and 19 percent unsure.

The measure, which is scheduled to take effect later this month, requires immigrants to carry their alien registration documents at all times and allows police to question the residency status of people in the course of enforcing another law. It also targets businesses that hire illegal immigrant laborers or knowingly transports them.

Passage of the measure earlier this year ignited protests in the state and across the country. Some opposing the law are urging economic boycotts of Arizona. Supporters say it is needed to confront rising problems involving illegal immigrants in Arizona, particularly those with criminal records. And they add that a lack of action by the federal government on the issue is forcing states to take action.

The poll, released Monday, indicates a large partisan divide, with two thirds of Republicans questioned opposed to the lawsuit, and only one in five in favor of the legal action against the Arizona law. But 49 percent of Democratic respondents support the lawsuit, with 28 percent opposed. Forty-nine percent of Independents oppose the lawsuit, with 36 percent in favor.

According to the survey, a plurality of people age 18-29 support the lawsuit, with nearly six out of ten people 65 and older opposing the legal action.

"That's an indication that older Americans, who tend to be more resistant to change on a number of levels, are concerned by the changes that immigration has brought to the U.S." says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Younger Americans tend to embrace change more readily, and changes in the racial and ethnic make-up of this country are among the biggest ones that generation will face."

The Pew Research Center/National Journal poll was conducted July 8-11, with 1,001 adults questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.

The Pew poll came out the same day that a Quinnipiac University survey indicated that six out of ten Pennsylvania voters say the federal government's lawsuit to block implementation of the measure is a bad idea, with 27 percent backing the Justice Department's legal action.

Filed under: Arizona • Immigration
soundoff (104 Responses)
  1. Bob of Lompoc

    I do not care if every single American is polled and speaks against the lawsuit. SB 1070 is nothing more than Nazis On The March. It is wrong, immoral and will, eventually, backfire on the National Socialist American Country Club Party.

    July 13, 2010 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  2. joseph

    Well, I say that if the federal government dosent like the new law so much, let them come up with a better one! Meanwhile the illegals are slowly taking over our country. When I'm visiting down south, I can't even understand most of the gas station attendants because they can't even speak our language. If they don't belong, then they need to go! There are legal ways to enter the country.

    July 13, 2010 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  3. hue

    First, states are not responsible for immigration. Not even with respect to their own borders. That is the resposibility of the feds.

    Second, the feds are not interested in securing the border against immigrants because the immigrants provide the cheap farm labor force that Wal-mart and the other giant retailers demand from the growers that allow Wal-Mart and the others to offer you cheap food. The feds (FDA, USDA, Dept of Labor, EPA) do not enforce anything within their purview that has to do with immigrant workers. All this so that you can buy a head of lettuce for a buck twenty-five instead of 4 bucks. THAT is the immigration policy of this country. And is most likely the reason the the DOJ is pursuing this lawsuit.

    July 13, 2010 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  4. Sue

    In less than one week-–citizens throughout the country donated over $1 million to Arizona's legal defense fund.

    The Democrats are going to get clobbered in November.

    There are many other great articles about this through this site americanpatrol. com. I definitely recommend that you check it out.

    July 13, 2010 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
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