A new Pew Research poll reveals that the majority of Americans support most of the provisions offered in Arizona's new immigration enforcement law. Seventy-three percent of Americans believe that individuals should carry proof of legal status, 67% support police being able to detain an individual that can't prove legal status, 62% support police questioning an individual they suspect to be in the country illegally, and 59% support the Arizona law.
One of the biggest myths offered by opponents of Arizona's SB1070, including criticism made by Pres. Obama, is that Arizona residents will now have to carry their "immigration papers" wherever they go. Federal law already requires all legal immigrants over the age of 18 to carry proof of legal residence at all times. The Pew poll reveals that this requirement is supported by a large majority of Americans.
Arizona's SB1070 also includes strict prohibitions on racial profiling, and lawmakers have made the law even stricter for police by requiring its enforcement only after the officer has already stopped, detained or arrested an individual. The poll reveals broad national support for local police efforts to enforce federal immigration laws.
Public opinion has varied on support for Arizona's immigration enforcement law, but every poll has revealed at least a majority of support for the law. A Rasmussen poll conducted shortly after Gov. Jan Brewer signed the bill into law revealed that 60% of Americans support an Arizona-style bill.
For more information on the Pew Research poll, see the Pew Research Center's website. For a list of polls revealing national and state opinion on SB1070, see our public opinion page, and for a list of responses to common myths, see our Fact Sheet for SB1070.
Updated: Wed, Jul 28th 2010 @ 12:54pm EDT