American Views on Immigration Are Still Very Liberal

By far most Americans support immigration and oppose deporting those who were brought to the country illegally as children.

Children play against the backdrop of the Statue of Liberty in New York City, New York, April 16, 2010
Children play against the backdrop of the Statue of Liberty in New York City, New York, April 16, 2010 (Several Seconds)

Despite the election of a nativist for president, America’s views on immigration are still remarkably liberal, an NBC News poll by SurveyMonkey has found (PDF).

  • 57 percent of Americans believe immigration helps the country more than it hurts. 38 percent believe it hurts more than it helps.
  • Asked about the impact of immigration on their own communities, 75 percent say it has either made no difference or made their communities better. Only 22 percent say it has made their communities worse.
  • 68 percent of Americans do think illegal immigration is a serious issue. But 71 percent argue undocumented immigrants should be offered a chance to apply for legal status against 26 percent who believe they should be deported.
  • 64 percent support the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, which shields those brought to the United States illegally as children from deportation. Only 30 percent oppose it.

Those 30 percent are Donald Trump’s base, though. It’s for them that he has reportedly decided to rescind DACA, if with a six-month delay to give Congress a chance to make a better policy.