Poll: Half of Democrats Say No ICE Deportation of Illegals with U.S.-born Children

A sign with the words "Abolish ICE" depicting someone's rear end defecating
Michelle Moons

Half of all Democrats believe the illegal-immigrant parents of U.S.-born children should be “exempt from deportation” by ICE, according to a June poll of 1,000 likely voters by Rasmussen Reports.

That sympathy for illegals is driving the Democrats’ “Abolish ICE” movement which has captured support from many top leaders in the Democratic Party, including Sens. Dick Durbin and Kristen Gillibrand, as well as New York Mayor Bill de Blasio.

But that left-wing reaction against ICE’s routine enforcement measures is deeply unpopular, according to the Rasmussen poll.

Just 32 percent of swing-voters say the illegal-immigrant parents of American-children should be “exempt from deportation.”  In contrast, 47 percent of swing voters say the illegal-immigrant parents should not be exempt from deportation, while an unusually large percentage — 21 percent — say they are “not sure.” The larger percentage may hide additional support for deportation.

Among Republicans, just 25 percent of respondents say illegal migrant parents should be exempt from deportation. Sixty-four percent of GOP supporters say the parents should not be exempt.

Thirty-nine percent of blacks and 46 percent of “others” — mostly Hispanics — say the parents should be shielded. But 41 percent of blacks and 41 percent of “others” say the parents should not be exempt.

The debate is complicated by the American tradition of providing citizenship to the U.S.- born children of illegal immigrants.  That practice is backed by 49 percent of respondents, and opposed by 42 percent of respondents in the Rasmussen poll.

In 2014, President Barack Obama announced that he would provide work permits to the illegal-immigrant parents of U.S.-born children, and largely exempt them from deportation. That policy was blocked by a Texas judge.

Many Democrats recognize the political risk created by their Abolish ICE campaign. “It should be an abolish Trump movement, not an abolish ICE,” John Sandweg, the former director of ICE for President Barack Obama, told MSNBC on June 2.

Democratic activists say the “Abolish ICE” campaign is not intended to open the borders which are guarded by the Customs and Border Protection agency. Instead, the activists say they hope to block ICE from deporting the economic migrants or refugees who get across the border, and who are seeking jobs and apartments as well as schools for their children. 

But that no-deportations policy would allow many companies to hire illegals instead of Americans.  The subsequent wave of migration from poor countries worldwide would force down wages for Americans and for legal immigrants, spike stock values on Wall Street, force up rents and housing prices, and also overcrowd public K-12 schools.

Polls show that no-deportations policy is radioactive among swing voters and Democrats.

But congressional actions show it is quietly supported by many GOP and Democratic politicians.



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