Washington, DC – A new Dallas Morning News op-ed by Alexandra Villarreal of the National Immigration Forum summarizes recent immigration polling that together reminds us that the American public remains overwhelmingly in favor of immigration reform and a balanced policy approach that includes citizenship, legal immigration pathways, fair access to asylum and refugee protections and measures to ensure an orderly border.
The public’s durable preferences on immigration broadly match the contours of the 2013 immigration bill that was introduced ten years ago this month and eventually passed the Senate with 68 Senate votes in June 2013. We are still paying the price for House Republicans’ absolute refusal to allow a vote and the GOP’s subsequent anti-immigrant descent over the past decade.
According to Vanessa Cárdenas, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
“Years of inaction and missed opportunities have contributed to the challenges we face today on immigration. One such missed opportunity was our inability a decade ago to modernize our immigration system in a bipartisan way.
Since then, the Republican Party has been jammed in reverse, preferring extremist anti-immigrant politics and political stunts instead of partnering on real solutions. Just look at their relentless anti-immigrant focus during the short months of their House majority this Congress – again this week, they are teeing up another in their near-weekly schedule of anti-immigrant House hearings that emphasize ugly white nationalist conspiracies and flat-out falsehoods, but punt on solutions.
Bipartisanship, compromise and legal immigration are dirty words in Republican circles that can get you primaried these days. Yet despite the GOP’s devolution and preference for cruelty, chaos, and anti-immigrant politics, the American people have remained steadfast in their core beliefs, as polling continues to underscore. There’s a strong majority of the public that wants their elected leaders to deliver on reform that balances humane border control and security and an orderly process for new arrivals with support for citizenship for the undocumented population, expanded legal pathways, and fair asylum access that upholds one of our proudest American traditions.
This vision of immigration policy is a point of consensus between most of the American public and the vast majority of Democrats – it’s the Republican Party elected officials and the MAGA base that are the outliers.”
Below, find key excerpts from the Dallas Morning News op-ed by Alexandra Villarreal of the National Immigration Forum on the state of immigration public opinion, demonstrating durable public sentiment behind a balanced approach to immigration policy:
“According to new national polling from the National Immigration Forum and the research firm Bullfinch Group, more than three-quarters of U.S. registered voters are proponents of Republicans and Democrats working together on immigration reforms that strengthen border security, allow Dreamers to earn citizenship, and ensure a legal, reliable workforce for our farmers and ranchers.
Over two-thirds of registered voters approve of providing refuge to individuals and families fleeing serious persecution and torture, while 7 in 10 say that welcoming newcomers to our communities is an American value.
…Taken together, these new data are clear testaments to what is already a long-established consensus among Americans: border security matters, so does the U.S. tradition as a land of refuge for the persecuted, and immigrants should generally have greater access to legal pathways.
…This broad need and desire from the U.S. public to welcome immigrants and protect the most vulnerable underscore what is now a government mandate to fix our immigration system. But Americans don’t want short-sighted, harmful immigration policies. We want solutions that will keep everyone safe and respect human life, dignity, and hard work.”