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Immigration Debate Splits Republican Politicians, Not Voters

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  • Immigration Debate Splits Republican Politicians, Not Voters

    Here's another article that suggest that the american public are backing a comprehensive approach to immigration.
    --------------------
    April 13 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. immigration debate has split congressional Republicans over enforcement measures, guest- worker programs and how to treat millions of undocumented aliens. Republican voters don't have the same problem.

    A Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times poll this week shows most Republicans support proposals to give legal status to undocumented workers and legislation that combines tougher enforcement of immigration laws with new temporary-worker programs.

    That 64 percent of Republican voters support this two-part approach may be good news for President George W. Bush, who has endorsed a similar proposal. These results indicate Republican voters are at odds with legislation approved by party lawmakers in the House of Representatives last year that only emphasized tougher enforcement and the construction of 700 miles of fencing along the Mexican border.

    ``You need to be fair to the people that have been here for a long time, who have kind of fallen through the cracks,'' said Lawrence Hall, 47, a Republican from Reisterstown, Maryland, who participated in the poll. ``And the ones that are just flooding over the border, I'd like to see that stopped.''

    The Senate failed to agree last week on a compromise proposal to create a guest-worker program and provide a path for as many as 10 million undocumented immigrants to gain legal status.

    In the survey of 1,357 Americans conducted April 8-11, 67 percent of Republicans said they support a solution similar to the Senate proposal, which would allow undocumented workers to stay in the U.S. after paying a fine, learning English and meeting other requirements. Twenty percent of Republicans oppose the plan.

    Guest-Worker Support

    Support for granting legal status to undocumented aliens is eight points higher among Republicans than among Democrats, 59 percent of whom said they backed such a measure. The poll's margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

    More Republicans than Democrats said they support a guest- worker program. Bush backs such a proposal, saying temporary visas are needed for immigrants who will do jobs Americans won't. Republicans favor that plan by 56 percent to 24 percent; Democrats favor it by 48 percent to 18 percent.

    ``I support the president's plan completely,'' said poll respondent Dorrie Taylor, a Republican from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. ``I just think we need to come up with a good compromise that meets the needs of the United States and the immigrants.''

    At the same time, 50 percent of Republicans support the House proposal to build more fencing along the Mexican border, while 28 percent oppose the plan. Democrats are split on the issue, with 38 percent of respondents opposing, an equal number supporting and 24 percent who said they don't know enough about the proposal.

    Split in Congress

    The poll findings contradict the perception in Washington that Republicans are split on the issue of immigration while Democrats are united.

    Last year's House-passed legislation, pushed by a group led by Republican Representative Tom Tancredo of Colorado, would require employers to certify workers are eligible to work in the U.S., included a provision that would make it a felony to be in the U.S. illegally and increase penalties on people who aid illegal immigrants.

    After nationwide protests against the House legislation, Republican leaders said this week they intend to remove the felony provision from any final legislation.

    Tancredo, who leads the 96-member House Immigration Reform Caucus, spearheaded opposition to the inclusion of any guest- worker program or a path to legal status for undocumented immigrants in the legislation.

    'A Foul Odor'

    Tancredo and other members of his caucus, which has only three Democrats, condemned the Senate immigration proposals as they were debated. Representative Dana Rohrabacher of California said March 31 that the Senate compromise had a ``foul odor.''

    According to the poll, most Republicans disagree. Among self-described conservatives, 57 percent support legislation that addresses both border security and provides legal status for undocumented immigrants.

    Sixty-nine percent of Republicans with household incomes of less than $40,000 said they back the two-part approach. This compares with 62 percent of Republican respondents with larger incomes who said they support it.

    Senate Plan

    While the Senate's plan allowing illegal aliens in the U.S. more than two years to begin a path to citizenship faced the strongest opposition from House Republicans, 73 percent of Republican voters with household income below $40,000 support it, as do 69 percent of Republicans without a college degree.

    Democrats from those groups show much weaker support, with 54 percent from each group favoring such an approach.

    Republican politicians may face political risks if they embrace final legislation that only focuses on border security and tougher enforcement of immigration laws.

    ``Democrats have a problem if they go one way and don't emphasize the rule of law and only have compassion,'' said Matthew Dowd, a political consultant who was the chief strategist of Bush's 2004 campaign. ``The Republicans have a problem if they only go with the rule of law. There has to be a balance.''

    `Like the Irish'

    Dowd said Republicans should view the immigration debate as an opportunity to extend their voter base among Hispanics. ``Hispanics are more like European immigrants of the early 1900s or late 1800s,'' he said. ``They are like the Irish. They start out Democratic, but as they become part of the economic mainstream, they become much more valuable to Republicans.''

    Senator Mel Martinez, a Florida Republican who was born in Cuba and came to the U.S. as a child, said Republicans should draw lessons from the experience of Pete Wilson, a former Republican governor of California.

    In 1994, Wilson backed Proposition 187, which would have excluded illegal immigrants from receiving social services, health care and public education. The uproar among Hispanic voters benefited Democrats, and no Republican presidential candidate has won California since.

    Martinez believes the current controversy risks having the same effect on Republicans nationally. ``There is no question that is what is at risk here,'' he said. ``We are engaged in a struggle for the soul of the party and I hope we will prevail.''



    To contact the reporter on this story:
    Nicholas Johnston in Washington at njohnston3@bloomberg.net

  • #2
    Here's another article that suggest that the american public are backing a comprehensive approach to immigration.
    --------------------
    April 13 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. immigration debate has split congressional Republicans over enforcement measures, guest- worker programs and how to treat millions of undocumented aliens. Republican voters don't have the same problem.

    A Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times poll this week shows most Republicans support proposals to give legal status to undocumented workers and legislation that combines tougher enforcement of immigration laws with new temporary-worker programs.

    That 64 percent of Republican voters support this two-part approach may be good news for President George W. Bush, who has endorsed a similar proposal. These results indicate Republican voters are at odds with legislation approved by party lawmakers in the House of Representatives last year that only emphasized tougher enforcement and the construction of 700 miles of fencing along the Mexican border.

    ``You need to be fair to the people that have been here for a long time, who have kind of fallen through the cracks,'' said Lawrence Hall, 47, a Republican from Reisterstown, Maryland, who participated in the poll. ``And the ones that are just flooding over the border, I'd like to see that stopped.''

    The Senate failed to agree last week on a compromise proposal to create a guest-worker program and provide a path for as many as 10 million undocumented immigrants to gain legal status.

    In the survey of 1,357 Americans conducted April 8-11, 67 percent of Republicans said they support a solution similar to the Senate proposal, which would allow undocumented workers to stay in the U.S. after paying a fine, learning English and meeting other requirements. Twenty percent of Republicans oppose the plan.

    Guest-Worker Support

    Support for granting legal status to undocumented aliens is eight points higher among Republicans than among Democrats, 59 percent of whom said they backed such a measure. The poll's margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

    More Republicans than Democrats said they support a guest- worker program. Bush backs such a proposal, saying temporary visas are needed for immigrants who will do jobs Americans won't. Republicans favor that plan by 56 percent to 24 percent; Democrats favor it by 48 percent to 18 percent.

    ``I support the president's plan completely,'' said poll respondent Dorrie Taylor, a Republican from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. ``I just think we need to come up with a good compromise that meets the needs of the United States and the immigrants.''

    At the same time, 50 percent of Republicans support the House proposal to build more fencing along the Mexican border, while 28 percent oppose the plan. Democrats are split on the issue, with 38 percent of respondents opposing, an equal number supporting and 24 percent who said they don't know enough about the proposal.

    Split in Congress

    The poll findings contradict the perception in Washington that Republicans are split on the issue of immigration while Democrats are united.

    Last year's House-passed legislation, pushed by a group led by Republican Representative Tom Tancredo of Colorado, would require employers to certify workers are eligible to work in the U.S., included a provision that would make it a felony to be in the U.S. illegally and increase penalties on people who aid illegal immigrants.

    After nationwide protests against the House legislation, Republican leaders said this week they intend to remove the felony provision from any final legislation.

    Tancredo, who leads the 96-member House Immigration Reform Caucus, spearheaded opposition to the inclusion of any guest- worker program or a path to legal status for undocumented immigrants in the legislation.

    'A Foul Odor'

    Tancredo and other members of his caucus, which has only three Democrats, condemned the Senate immigration proposals as they were debated. Representative Dana Rohrabacher of California said March 31 that the Senate compromise had a ``foul odor.''

    According to the poll, most Republicans disagree. Among self-described conservatives, 57 percent support legislation that addresses both border security and provides legal status for undocumented immigrants.

    Sixty-nine percent of Republicans with household incomes of less than $40,000 said they back the two-part approach. This compares with 62 percent of Republican respondents with larger incomes who said they support it.

    Senate Plan

    While the Senate's plan allowing illegal aliens in the U.S. more than two years to begin a path to citizenship faced the strongest opposition from House Republicans, 73 percent of Republican voters with household income below $40,000 support it, as do 69 percent of Republicans without a college degree.

    Democrats from those groups show much weaker support, with 54 percent from each group favoring such an approach.

    Republican politicians may face political risks if they embrace final legislation that only focuses on border security and tougher enforcement of immigration laws.

    ``Democrats have a problem if they go one way and don't emphasize the rule of law and only have compassion,'' said Matthew Dowd, a political consultant who was the chief strategist of Bush's 2004 campaign. ``The Republicans have a problem if they only go with the rule of law. There has to be a balance.''

    `Like the Irish'

    Dowd said Republicans should view the immigration debate as an opportunity to extend their voter base among Hispanics. ``Hispanics are more like European immigrants of the early 1900s or late 1800s,'' he said. ``They are like the Irish. They start out Democratic, but as they become part of the economic mainstream, they become much more valuable to Republicans.''

    Senator Mel Martinez, a Florida Republican who was born in Cuba and came to the U.S. as a child, said Republicans should draw lessons from the experience of Pete Wilson, a former Republican governor of California.

    In 1994, Wilson backed Proposition 187, which would have excluded illegal immigrants from receiving social services, health care and public education. The uproar among Hispanic voters benefited Democrats, and no Republican presidential candidate has won California since.

    Martinez believes the current controversy risks having the same effect on Republicans nationally. ``There is no question that is what is at risk here,'' he said. ``We are engaged in a struggle for the soul of the party and I hope we will prevail.''



    To contact the reporter on this story:
    Nicholas Johnston in Washington at njohnston3@bloomberg.net

    Comment


    • #3
      Is there anyone else that dare say that the american people only wants mass deportation after looking at those polls's number?

      It really pisses me off when racist people like paddy and aliba claims that most american support enforcement-only whyle the polls suggest otherwise....Please guys, the lou dobbs and bill o'reilley's polls arent legit because those guys support hr4437 and their representatives are the one conducting the polls, so therefore, you should NEVER trust a lou dobbs polls or any groups that are anti-immigration.

      The reason why those polls are so phony is because the numbers are too anti-immigration, not by a small margin, but a large margin...Mr. dobbs had a poll that suggested 95% of the american public supports hr4437. I couldnt believe it when i saw the numbers and starting shaking my head.Lou dobbs is very sad, so sad that he would make up fraudulant polls to make his point.

      Comment


      • #4
        GUYS, I EXPECT THOSE FRESH POLLS TO HELP ANY LAWMAKERS TO CHANGE THEIR VIEW ON IMMIGRATION...i FEEL LIKE TOO MANY LAWMAKERS THAT OPPOSES A GUEST WORKER, DO SO BECAUSE THEY THINK THE AMERICANS ARE TOTALLY AGAINST ANY TYPE OF LEGAL STATUS TO UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRANTS..BUT WITH THIS POLL, IT SHOULD RE ASSURE THEM THAT ITS NOT THE CASE.

        I EXPECT MCCAIN TO GET ON THE FLOOR AND SHOW THE OTHER LAWMAKERS THE NEW POLL NUMBERS.

        Comment


        • #5
          In 1994, Wilson backed Proposition 187, which would have excluded illegal immigrants from receiving social services, health care and public education. The uproar among Hispanic voters benefited Democrats, and no Republican presidential candidate has won California since.

          Martinez believes the current controversy risks having the same effect on Republicans nationally. ``There is no question that is what is at risk here,'' he said. ``We are engaged in a struggle for the soul of the party and I hope we will prevail.''

          Comment


          • #6
            Hey Jean..

            As a silent reader, I have to admit that your postings are quite informative. Let me ask you this..what are the chances for the overstayers who simply overstayed on a student visa evenafter graduating with a college degree. Are those people also eligible for guest worker "amnesty" if this compromise bill materializes..ever. A friend of mine makes almost $70k as a Financial Analyst but he never retured to his country after graduating from the University, and he also did not apply for H-1B when he was legal. His company never asked for his legal status either. He has valid SSN and pays a whole lot on taxes. Does he also fall under the "job most Americans won't do"?

            Comment


            • #7
              According to the hagel/martinez bill, he should be able to apply, but this will all depend on how many years she/he's been residing inside the country...Also, pay attention to the kyl's amendment vote...The democrats killed this specific amendment because it was intended to kill he bill and the chance of anyone that overstays a visa, to qualify.

              The good news is that republicans and democrats claims they have enought vote to kill this kyl's amendment, but you never know and the amendment is like a trick where kyl tries to make you vote for the bill if you're against felons from applying, but he has a poison-pill wording that would eliminate 1 million people, including you from applying.

              Im very interested in this specific amendment because i have an irish friend that overstayed her visa waiver, and if the amendment passes, they she will have to return to ireland.

              Comment


              • #8
                Jean thanks for your quick reply. She has been here since 1998 and she graduated from school in December of 2002. She did not apply for OPT either and simply accpeted this job from a firm that came to hunt fresh would-be graduates. So I guess she was illegal ever since she graduated. I hope this compromise bill helps her cause and your Irish friend as well.

                Comment


                • #9
                  she would surely qualify..Matter fact, the dream act will do the trick.

                  Watch c-span TV once those lawmakers are back from the recesss on the 24th and keep your eyes on the kyl's amendment...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks Jean ..last question for you.
                    Is dream act good for the people who came here from the country other than Mexico? My friend and his girlfriend both came here legally and finished college education. Does dream act pertain to overstayers like them as well?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      yes, it's not a bill created just for mexican, but again, it will all depend on whether visa overstayers would be able to apply for the bill in general....from what ive understand.

                      I would have to take a look a the dream act draft again.

                      Comment

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