It seems that the southern border crisis is bringing Americans from the left and right to agree on one issue: deportations of illegal immigrants at the border should be sped up.
According to the poll, 53 percent of Americans “think that the legal process for dealing with Central American children who cross the border illegally should be accelerated, even if that means that some children who are eligible for asylum are deported.”
This majority compared to 38 percent of Americans who said they “support staying with the current policy, even though the process could take a long time and the children will stay in the U.S. in the interim.”
Deportations under current law for illegal immigrants from Central America is much slower compared to those from Mexico and Canada, thanks to a 2008 law which mandates that they be turned over to the Department of Health and Human Services instead.
President Barack Obama’s handling of the matter is not getting high ratings either.
Just 28 percent said they approved of Obama’s handling of the southern border crisis. Meanwhile, 56 percent said they disapproved of the decisions he has made on the issue. This is one of the president’s lowest ratings of any single issue since he took office in 2008.
Also, a majority of Republicans, Independents and Democrats believe the processing for deportations should be accelerated.
Most Republicans (60%) and independents (56%) think legal processing of the children should be sped up even if it means some children who are eligible for asylum are deported. Democrats are divided: 46% favor an expedited legal process, but about as many (47%) favor maintaining the current policy, though that might result in a lengthy legal process and a long stay in the U.S. for the children.
Support for illegal immigrants to be given a path to citizenship has slipped from 73 percent back in February to now 68 percent. And when asked if undocumented immigrants should be able to apply for citizenship, the support also fell, from 46 percent in February to now 40 percent.
The Pew Poll was conducted July 8-14 and it has a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percentage points.