CATO: Republican-Leaning Immigrants Feel Stronger About Assimilation into America

FILE - In this Feb. 15, 2017 file photo, people take the oath of citizenship during a naturalization ceremony at the Los Angeles Convention Center. In a Los Angeles ceremony Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017, more than 9,000 new American citizens will hear a newly recorded message from President Donald Trump …
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File

Immigrants who identify as Republican are more likely to blend into American civic life and culture, according to a CATO Institute/YouGov survey released Tuesday.

The survey found that migrants who identify as Democrat or Republican have a disagreement on the meaning of assimilation into America.

The CATO Institute/YouGov survey asked 2,600 U.S. adults to explore and examine why Americans either support or oppose a more open immigration system. The survey was done between March 5-15, 2021, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.21 percent. The survey was asked in English.

The immigrants who identify as Republicans are roughly about 30 percent more likely than a Democrat to say it is “extremely” or “very” important to any of the immigrants being loyal to Americans and the United States. When asked, 87 percent of the Republicans said it is “extremely” or “very” important versus 60 percent of the Democrats thought it is important to be loyal to Americans and the United States.

Additionally, when asked about being self-reliant, immigrants gave a similar answer, 87 percent of the Republicans said it is “extremely” or “very” important, versus 56 percent of the Democrats thought it is important to be self-reliant. They were also asked about being a fluent English speaker; the survey found, 71 percent of the Republicans said it is “extremely” or “very” important versus 38 percent of the Democrats who thought it is important.

Moreover, when the immigrants were asked about adopting American habits and customs, the survey found that 55 percent of the Republicans think it is “extremely” or “very” important versus 24 percent of the Democrats. In addition, when asked about adopting American history, the results were roughly the same, 48 percent of Republicans versus 23 percent of the Democrats. The results that showed celebrating the American holidays were even less, with 41 percent of the Republicans and only 18 percent of the Democrats.

Furthermore, the survey first found when examining the partisanship of Americans by their immigration background shows that immigrants who are native-born and are not second-generation immigrants happen to either identify or lean with the Democratic party. In addition, the sample shows of the first-generation, 48 percent identified or leaned Democratic, while 26 percent of them said they were Republican, and 26 percent said they were Independent leaning.

Among second-generation immigrants, a majority (58 percent) identified or leaned Democratic while 29 percent of them said they were Republican, and only 18 percent said they were Independent leaning. Looking among third-generation immigrants, 44 percent identified or leaned Democratic, making this the least number of Democrats out of all three generations. In comparison, 40 percent of them said they were Republican, making this the highest number of Republicans. Only 16 percent identified as Independent leaning, making this the smallest amount of Independents.

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