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These poll numbers were released earlier today by Rasmussen Reports -- "an electronic publishing firm specializing in the collection, publication, and distribution of public opinion polling information."


59% Support Arizona Law; 53% Trust States More than Feds To Enforce Immigration Law

Friday, July 30, 2010

Despite a judge's ruling putting key provisions of Arizona's new immigration law on hold,most U.S. voters still favor passage of such a law in their own state. They also think it's better to have states enforce immigration law rather than to rely on the federal government.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey, taken after the judge's Tuesday ruling, finds that 59% favor passage of an Arizona-like immigration law in their state, marking little change from earlier this month . Just 32% oppose such a law.

Thirty-nine percent (39%) of voters agree with Judge Susan Bolton's decision to delay implementation of certain sections of Arizona's law until all legal challenges are resolved.Fifty percent (50%) disagree with the judge's decision to hold up those portions of the law aimed most directly at stopping illegal immigration. The rest of the law went into effect yesterday.

These results are not surprising given that 56% opposed the Obama administration's decision to challenge the Arizona law in court . The Justice Department argued that the Arizona action it usurps federal authority. Arizona officials say the federal government is not enforcing immigration law and that they need to act because of the growing financial burden and public safety risk caused by illegal immigrants.

Most voters (53%)now say it's better for individual states to act on their own to enforce immigration laws rather than relying on the federal government for enforcement. Forty-one percent (41%) take the opposite view.

The Political Class sharply disagrees with Mainstream voters, however. While 66% of Mainstream voters want individual states to enforce immigration law, an overwhelming 81% of the Political Class want enforcement by the federal government.

The survey of 1,000 Likely U.S. Voters was conducted on July 28-29,2010 by Rasmussen Reports. 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 .

Rasmussen Reports will release new statewide numbers from Arizona on the immigration issue at noon Eastern today.

Fifty-four percent (54%) of all voters remain at least somewhat concerned that efforts to identify and deport illegal immigrants will also end up violating the civil rights of some U.S. citizens, but 45% don't share this concern. This includes 30% who are Very Concerned and 15% who are Not At All Concerned.

This level of concern has remained constant in surveys since Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed the state law in mid-April.

Eighty-five percent (85%) of Republicans and 70% of voters not affiliated with either major party favor passage of an Arizona-like law in their state. Fifty-seven percent (57%) of Democrats oppose such a law.

Sixty-one percent (61%) of voters in President Obama's party agree with the judge's decision to block full implementation of the Arizona law. Seventy-seven percent (77%) of GOP voters and 54% of unaffiliateds disagree with the judge's ruling.

When it comes to enforcement of immigration laws, 63% of Democrats think it's better to rely on the federal government. Seventy-two percent (72%) of Republicans and 60% of unaffiliated voters have more confidence in individual states to enforce the law.

Democrats are also much more worried than Republicans and unaffiliated voters about possible civil rights violations stemming from efforts to identify and deport illegal immigrants.

Seventy-seven percent (77%) of Mainstream voters like the idea of a law like Arizona's in their home state, but 72% of the Political Class are opposed. While 64% of Mainstream voters disagree with the judge's decision to put the state's law on hold, 52% of the Political Class agree with the judge.

News about the Arizona law continues to be followed closely by most voters. Eighty-four percent (84%) say they are following news reports about the law at least somewhat closely, with 52% who are following Very Closely. Only 14% are not following closely, if at all.

While most voters oppose the federal challenge of Arizona's effort to fight illegal immigration, 54% think the Justice Department should take legal action against cities that provide sanctuary for illegal immigrants. Even more think the federal government should cut off funds to these "sanctuary cities."

Sixty-four percent (64%) of voters believe the federal government by failing to enforce immigration law is more to blame for the current controversy over Arizona's new statute than state officials are for passing it.

By a two-to-one margin, voters believe the policies of the federal government encourage people to enter the United States illegally .

Voters have consistently said for years that when it comes to immigration reform, gaining control of the border is more important than legalizing the status of undocumented workers already living in the United States. 

Support for the building of a fence along the Mexican border has reached a new high , and voters are more confident than ever that illegal immigration can be stopped.