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Poll shows many support real change in U.S. immigration law

Last month, the president made the decision to sign an executive order that made more undocumented migrants eligible for permanent residence than ever before. This order affects immigrants living all across the United States, including those who are currently residing in North Carolina. While the order has its share of detractors, there are also many who support efforts to enact reforms to U.S. immigration law. A recent poll revealed that nearly half of those polled support the president's recent order.

According to the poll conducted by the Pew Research Center in tandem with USA Today, an overwhelming 70 percent stated that as long as they meet certain conditions, undocumented immigrants should have provisions for remaining legally in this country. Additionally, of those 70 percent, approximately two-thirds offered the opinion that these immigrants should have the option to become a naturalized citizen. This reflects a change over the previous year's poll.

The remaining third believed that unauthorized persons should be offered the opportunity to become lawful permanent residents. While there are those who remain firmly opposed to granting legal status for immigrants who are currently undocumented, support for change in the current policies is steadily increasing. The younger generations are more inclined to favor helping these immigrants, and these are the citizens who will be voting well into the future in order to push changes.

Overall, the poll revealed that the recent executive action has not had a profound change in the way Americans view undocumented immigrants, as a poll in October had a similar outcome. If anything, the views of those questioned reflect a growing desire for meaningful reform to U.S. immigration law. Furthermore, the majority expressed empathy for immigrants who have come to the United States looking for a better standard of living. North Carolina residents who lack required documents can turn to legal professionals who are experienced in working through the current immigration system and who can provide useful information and assistance concerning the process of obtaining legal status.

Source: people-press.org, "Immigration Action Gets Mixed Response, But Legal Pathway Still Popular", Dec. 11, 2014

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