Voters Reject Guest-Worker Plan
By: Matthew A. Roberts
A new Zogby poll of likely voters finds that Americans prefer, by two to one, the House of Representatives’ enforcement-only bill to the Senate’s plan to grant guest-worker status. Sixty-four percent of Americans support the House bill, with only 30 percent supporting the Senate plan. Support for the enforcement-only approach by itself also proves to be widespread, with 81 percent of Republicans, 72 percent of Independents, 57 percent of Democrats, and 53 percent of Hispanics supporting the enforcement-only House bill.
Regarding legal immigration, this poll demonstrates that Americans want less – not more – immigration, with only two percent responding that current immigration levels are too low. The Senate plan, which would increase legal immigration from one to two million a year, appears blatantly at odds with the wishes of voters. Americans, through and through, do not think we need more people, not even for low-paying jobs. Seventy-four percent of likely voters think that there are enough Americans to fill low-wage jobs, if employers would pay and treat employees better.
What do these numbers mean? Most Democrats, President Bush, and many Republicans in the Senate are out of touch. This news could be particularly damaging for Democrats, given that a majority of their constituents generally supports an enforcement-only approach. It could also be damaging for certain Republicans (like Senators McCain, Brownback, DeWine, or Graham) who currently attempt to auction off citizenship for (unlikely) future votes. Senate Republicans ignoring their base on immigration will likely benefit Democrats this November. Many Republicans are so angry over the guest-worker proposal that they may vote third-party or not vote at all.
This poll is the first poll to ask the question – using neutral language – whether likely voters prefer the House bill (enforcement-only) or Senate (guest-worker) plan. This outcome interestingly depicts that despite all the pro-amnesty rhetoric in the liberal media, 64 percent of Americans still favor an enforcement-only approach. If we were to have a more balanced media, with more opponents of immigration allowed to speak, this number would possibly jump from 64 to 80 percent.
Although previous polls showed that more Americans may support a guest-worker plan, the wording of such polls proved at best questionable, at worst blatantly biased. Critics, however, have always been skeptical of previous polls, especially when almost every person you know – Democrat or Republican – says he wants the same thing: (1) no guest-worker plan, (2) a border secured by guards and a physical fence, and (3) a massive reduction in legal and illegal immigration.
Matthew A. Roberts is a freelance columnist. Recent publications and mentions of work: Washington Times, FrontPageMag.org, National Federation of Republican Assemblies, Post Chronicle, et al. He is also co-editor of a weblog at: www.conservatoroccidentalis.com