According to a bipartisan poll that was conducted to gauge Americans’ views on immigration reform, there is general support of the various immigration reform measures that have been proposed and are being considered by Congress. The poll results conducted by Democratic polling firm Global Strategy Group and Republican polling firm Basswood Research indicate that Americans fully acknowledge the need to reform the current immigration system in the U.S. It also shows that Americans agree on a range of different proposals, from enforcement measures and new pathways to legal status to citizenship for undocumented immigrants and creating more opportunities for workers in key industries to legally immigrate to the U.S.
The poll results also revealed that 46 percent of voters would be less likely to support candidates who are against passing immigration reform. Voters declared that they would “punish” Congressional candidates that did not support immigrants’ rights. Nearly 70 percent of voters (including 64 percent of Republicans) support allowing undocumented immigrants to earn a pathway to citizenship. The poll also found that the majority of American voters, almost 90 percent, approve of allowing immigrants that were brought to the U.S. as children to earn citizenship. Also, three out of four voters declared that they would be “disappointed” if Congress did not push for effective immigration reform.
Immigration advocacy groups like the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM) have called for “electoral punishment for opponents of reform.” The press release that FIRM published warned legislators who are against immigration reform to “expect relentless and constant confrontations that will escalate until they agree to support immigration reform.” A spokesperson from FIRM mentioned a report that was submitted in 2013 showing that many congressional districts have a large number of naturalized immigrants and young Latinos and Asians who can vote and who deeply support immigration reform. GOP failure to act on reform could potentially cost them more 100 congressional seats.