Sixty-four percent of North Carolina voters favor the new law in Arizona which tracks federal law and allows local law enforcement to arrest illegal immigrants for being in the state illegally according to new Civitas poll results. Twenty-five percent said they oppose it, and 11 percent said they were not sure.
As the debate continues surrounding the legislation, 17 states are now in the process of filing their own versions of Arizona’s SB 1070 law: Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas and Utah.
On the local level, 58 percent of North Carolina voters said they think the state should pass a similar law to Arizona’s. Thirty-two percent disagreed and oppose enacting such a law and nine percent said they didn’t know.
And further highlighting the discussion, just last month the Pew Research Center found that the majority of Americans approve of the Arizona law. Fifty-nine percent approved of the law while 32 percent disapproved. Pew’s figure jumped to 73% of respondents approving of requiring people to produce documents verifying their legal status if asked for by police.
The Civitas poll also revealed bipartisan support for Arizona’s immigration law as Republicans favor it 84 percent-7 percent. Unaffiliated voters support it by a 65 percent to 25 percent margin. And half of Democratic voters (50 percent) favor the law while only 38 percent oppose it.
The Federation for American Immigration Reform estimates that illegal immigrants cost North Carolina taxpayers over $17.7 billion every year. As we struggle with record high unemployment numbers and unsustainable debt figures, it remains to be seen whether state leaders will respond to pressure from citizens to enforce immigration policies in the state that federal government has failed to enforce. (60 percent believe it is the Federal government’s responsibility to enforce immigration and 91 percent give them a fair or poor rating) Voters on both sides are clear, however, that something must be done.
Full poll results and crosstabs here