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Reporting from Washington – Despite steep odds, the White House has discussed prospects for reviving a major overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws, a commitment that President Obama has postponed once already.
Obama took up the issue privately with his staff Monday in a bid to advance a bill through Congress before lawmakers become too distracted by approaching midterm elections.
In the session, Obama and members of his Domestic Policy Council outlined ways to resuscitate the effort in a White House meeting with two senators — Democrat Charles E. Schumer of New York and Republican Lindsey Graham of South Carolina — who have spent months trying to craft a bill.
According to a person familiar with the meeting, the White House may ask Schumer and Graham to at least produce a blueprint that could be turned into legislative language.
The basis of a bill would include a path toward citizenship for the 10.8 million people living in the U.S. illegally. Citizenship would not be granted lightly, the White House said. Undocumented workers would need to register, pay taxes and pay a penalty for violating the law. Failure to comply might result in deportation.
An Examination of Minority Voters’ Views on Immigration
Backgrounders and ReportsDownload a pdf of this Backgrounder
Steven A. Camarota is the Director of Research at the Center for Immigration Studies.
While it is sometimes assumed that minorities, particularly Hispanics, favor increased immigration and legalization for illegal immigrants, a new Zogby survey finds that minority voters’ views are more complex. The poll of Hispanic, Asian-American, and African-American likely voters finds some support for legalization. But overall each of these groups prefers enforcement and for illegal immigrants to return home. Moreover, significant majorities of all three groups think that the current level of immigration is too high. These views are in sharp contrast to the leaders of most ethnic advocacy organizations, who argue for increased immigration and legalization of illegal immigrants. The survey used neutral language, avoiding such terms as “amnesty,” “illegal alien,” or “undocumented.”
Among the findings:
In contrast to the leadership of many ethnic advocacy groups, most members of minority groups think immigration is too high.
- Hispanics: 56 percent said it is too high; 7 percent said too low; 14 percent just right.
- Asian-Americans: 57 percent said immigration is too high; 5 percent said too low; 18 percent just right.
- African-Americans: 68 percent said it is too high; 4 percent said too low; 14 percent just right.
Most members of minority groups do not feel that illegal immigration is caused by limits on legal immigration as many ethnic advocacy groups argue; instead, members feel it’s due to a lack of enforcement.
- Hispanics: Just 20 percent said illegal immigration was caused by not letting in enough legal immigrants; 61 percent said inadequate enforcement.
- Asian-Americans: 19 percent said not enough legal immigration; 69 percent said inadequate enforcement.
- African-Americans: 16 percent said not enough legal immigration; 70 percent said inadequate enforcement.
For the full article/poll: http://cis.org/Minority-Views-Immigration