A recent edition of PolitiFact, a nonpartisan organization designed to find the truth in politics, used PRRI data to determine whether former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson was correct in saying that “Almost every Hispanic in the country wants to see immigration reform.” Richardson was using this assertion to attack Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for his skepticism about the immigration legislation that’s currently being debated in Congress. PolitiFact used a recent survey from PRRI to set the record straight, noting that it was difficult to find polls (like ours) that could produce reliable results on this issue:
• Public Religion Research Institute-Brookings Institution, March 2013. “Should the immigration system allow immigrants currently living in the U.S. illegally to become citizens provided they meet certain requirements?”
Among Hispanic Catholics,74 percent supported the policy, as did 71 percent of Hispanic Protestants. The poll surveyed 450 Hispanics. The poll surveyed 450 Hispanics, for a margin of error of 5 percentage points.
• Public Religion Research Institute-Brookings Institution, March 2013. “Do you favor allowing illegal immigrants brought to the U.S. as children to gain legal resident status if they join the military or go to college?” (This is a core part of the DREAM Act.)
Among Hispanic Catholics, 83 percent expressed support, while 68 percent of Hispanic Protestants did. The poll surveyed 450 Hispanics, for a margin of error of 5 percentage points.
PolitiFact concluded that Richardson’s claim was “mostly true,” noting that strong and consistent majorities of Hispanic Americans favored elements of the current immigration proposal. However, they took him to task for failing to acknowledge the not-insignificant minority of Hispanic Americans who expressed reservations about these policies.