Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Public Is Opposed To Trump's Deportation Plans

Since becoming president, Donald Trump has issued a flurry of executive orders -- making it seem that he wants to rule by presidential edict rather than compromising with Congress. One of those executive orders was an attack on undocumented immigrants. It authorized construction of a border wall (although that would need congressional funding), authorized the hiring of 5,000 new Border Patrol officers (which might also require more congressional funding), stripped grant money to sanctuary cities, ended "catch and release" policies for undocumented immigrants, and reinstated local and state immigration "partnerships".

Trump is already going back on some campaign promises (like protecting Social Security and Medicare, and draining the Washington "swamp"), but it is beginning to look like he wants to keep his ludicrous promise to deport all the undocumented immigrants currently in the United States.

If he does try doing that, he will be going against the will of the American people. The charts above are from the Public Religion Research Institute. They questioned over 40,000 people during the 2016 campaign, and they found that a significant majority don't want deportations (79%) -- with 64% preferring a path to citizenship and 15% wanting to grant permanent legal residence status to the undocumented immigrants. Only 16% said they wanted to identify and deport them.

And that view crossed political lines -- with a majority of Democrats, Independents, and Republicans preferring a path to citizenship. Trump (and his teabagger cohorts in Congress) may want to declare war on undocumented immigrants, but the American people do not. They want our broken immigration laws fixed, including providing a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants willing to fulfill some basic requirements.

I think the second chart is especially interesting. It shows that not a single state has anything close to a majority wanting to deport the undocumented immigrants, including the states that Trump carried easily in the 2016 election. No state has even a third of its citizens preferring deportation.

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