A new survey conducted by Zogby International reveals that 56 percent of Mexicans believe that someone they know would try entering the United States illegally if the country was to offer legal status to illegal aliens. Yesterday, Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) offered an outline for a mass amnesty plan.
Here are the survey's major points:
- A clear majority of people in Mexico, 56 percent, thought giving legal status to illegal aliens in the United States would make it more likely that people they know would go to the United States illegally. Just 17 percent thought it would make Mexicans less likely to go illegally. The rest were unsure or thought it would make no difference.
- Of Mexicans with a member of their immediate household in the United States, 65 percent said a legalization program would make people they know more likely to go to America illegally.
- Two-thirds of Mexicans know someone living in the United States; one-third said an immediate member of their household was living in the United States.
- Interest in going to the United States remains strong even in the current recession, with 36 percent of Mexicans (39 million people) saying they would move to the United States if they could. This is consistent with a recent Pew Research Center poll which found that about one-third of Mexicans would go to the United States if they could. At present, 12 to 13 million Mexico-born people live in the United States.
- An overwhelming majority (69 percent) thought that the primary loyalty of Mexican-Americans (Mexico- and U.S.-born) should be to Mexico. Just 20 percent said it should be to the United States. The rest were unsure.
- Also, 69 percent of people in Mexico felt that the Mexican government should represent the interests of Mexican-Americans (Mexico- and U.S.-born) in the United States.
- A plurality, 39 percent, of Mexicans thought that in the last year fewer people they know had gone to the United States as illegal aliens compared to previous years. Only 27 percent thought more had gone. The rest thought it had stayed the same or were unsure.
- A plurality, 40 percent, also thought that in the last year more of the illegal aliens they know had returned to Mexico compared to previous years. Only 25 percent thought the number returning had fallen. The rest thought it had stayed the same or were unsure.
- Both the bad economy and increased immigration enforcement were cited as reasons fewer people were going to America as illegal aliens and more were coming back to Mexico.
More information and analysis on the poll can be found by visiting the Center for Immigration Studies' website.
Updated: Wed, Oct 14th 2009 @ 1:13pm EDT