New AP Poll Offers One Choice on Immigration Reform

Back in the day of the Model T, Henry Ford famously told consumers, “You can have any color you want, as long as it’s black.” Ford could get away with selling cars in only one color because there really weren’t a whole lot of options for consumers who wanted affordably priced automobiles.

A new Associated Press/Roper poll on immigration apparently drew its inspiration from Mr. Ford. The poll, which is gaining widespread attention, appears to indicate that the American public favors amnesty for illegal aliens. However, like your grandfather’s options for the Model T, the AP/Roper poll comes in only one color. As everyone knows, the responses you get in polls very often depend on what questions you ask and, in this case, what questions you don’t ask.

The question posed to respondents reads, “Do you favor or oppose providing a legal way for illegal immigrants already in the United States to become U.S. citizens?” A majority, 62 percent, answered yes. What this poll really indicates is that Americans are hungry for something to be done to fix our broken immigration system, and amnesty was the only item on the menu.

Of course our options for addressing illegal immigration are much more varied than what was offered by the AP/Roper poll. Unfortunately, neither this poll, nor other recent polls allow people to choose among the other options, including inducing “voluntary compliance” with our immigration laws by systematically removing all the benefits and incentives to remain in the United States illegally.

About Author


Ira joined the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in 1986 with experience as a journalist, professor of journalism, special assistant to Gov. Richard Lamm (Colorado), and press secretary of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. His columns have appeared in National Review, LA Times, NY Times, Washington Post, Newsweek, and more. He is an experienced TV and radio commentator.


  1. Pingback: People Say the Darnedest Things, Media Finds

  2. avatar

    Check out the poll by AP. I remember in college how often times polls were forced by “saying” and “showing” on paper that the poll had actually been taken and counted. In actuality the polls were forged in order to get the grade for the class. In other words polls were forged and grades were earned.

    The address for the poll is

    The numbers for the income do not match up and they should. Also it seems like the dates of the poll are listed at the top of each page and the poll was taken for the years of 2009 to 2013. This is a fraud poll and I don’t trust it. How did they get exactly 50% males and 50% females? Odd huh? To randomly poll people and get those figures and to actually find people with that type of income that is listed. On page 12 of this poll it is tallied that 14% of the people polled are Hispanic, yet on page 13 it questions as follows:

    “DM17. [IF SPANISH/HISPANIC/LATINO (D16=1), ASK:] In addition to being Hispanic, Latino or Spanish, what race or races do you consider yourself to be?

    DM18. [IF NOT SPANISH/HISPANIC/LATINO (D16=2), ASK:] What race or races do you consider yourself to be? [DO NOT READ. ACCEPT MULTIPLE RESPONSES.] —
    Which would be fine but the boxed area below these questions does not contain Hispanic, Spanish or Latino in it??

    So, for people to just blindly believe these polls is crazy. I think it is just another way for someone to make money and for someone else to sway public opinion by suggesting that this is what America thinks and that we should believe it too.

    I agree with Barbara Newsome, “We are in dire trouble with Barack Obama as our leader.”

    We are also in trouble if we think that Congress and the Senate is out to protect our interests. All they care about is making money in what ever form they can and getting new votes to get reelected.

    God help us all.

  3. avatar

    High Immigration Quotas and Constantly Increased WORK VISAS-PERMITS-GREENCARDS and ILLEGAL ALIENS are Responsible for over 30MILLION LEGAL US CITIZENS being JOBLESS … BROKE … HOMELESS … FOODSTAMPS … HOPELESS!
    And the Unemployment NUMBERS are GROWING … obama and his group of THUGS LIE About the NUMBERS!!!

  4. avatar

    we don’t need a fence on the border. use EVERIFY to check that all workers presently working and those appling for work are either U.S.citizens or are here legally. huge fines should be levied against any employer who doesn’t use EVERIFY and .esp against anyone who knowingly hires illegals. a second offense should be at least 6 months in jail. maybe there should be a national RIGHT TO WORK CARD. to get this card, you must prove citizenship or that you are here legally. WITHOUT A JOB, THE ILLEGALS WILL HAVE TO LEAVE. there will be very litle cost to deport the rest and very few will come here.

    • avatar
      richard harris on

      Doesn’t have a chance of working. At least a third and more like two thirds of illegal aliens are working off the books. Employers prefer it that way. Furthermore enforcement against employers is not efficient. It takes way too much time and resources for a district attorney to prepare a case against an employer. Employers will hire lawyers who can get trials delayed and delayed. It’s all too time consuming for a prosecutor to even think about prosecuting employers. It’s a lot more cost effective and efficient to stop them at the border. One border patrol agent can deal with about 10 illegal aliens a day. One prosecutor can deal with one illegal employer a year. Prosecutors are so overworked they look to dodge cases wherever they can. Look at all the cases that are disposed of with plea bargains, INCLUDING MURDER CASES.

  5. avatar

    Whether or not I believe in amnesty for illegal immigrants, I do believe that our leaders cannot answer to their consciences if they vote to make lawful citizens of those who entered this nation illegally, if the disapproval ratings for such initiatives is greater than five-percent. Do we believe it is fair to place the concerns of illegal immigrants ahead of the concerns of thirty-two percent of our citizens? If thirty-two percent of our citizens are against amnesty for illegal immigrants, or quasi-amnesty legislation, then approximately 100 million of our citizens our against such legislation: a huge number. They reply ‘cheap labor’. Every service provided to Americans is expensive, and more expensive here than in most other nations such as Mexico, ie., cost of education. If illegal’s are allowed education, and other services, to a greater or lesser extent than citizens, then the cost is not cheap. Approaching seventeen-trillion dollars of federal debt. Where is this money for illegals derived? Congress cannot honestly assert that the federal debt is repayable, and yet they want to give more of our citizens’ money away. If our nation had resolved such issues as urban sprawl, unhealthy air indices, drug trafficking, poverty, and etcetera, and then wanted to vote on allowing vast numbers of immigrants into our nation, then perhaps that’s a fair vote, under fair circumstances. However, we realize that Congress cannot resolve the easiest of problems, and they spend a whole bunch of money trying(seems like to fail), on those efforts, and therefore they attempt to pass legislation that might make them popular with one group, in hopes that it will cause others to forget the honest issues: federal debt, drug trafficking, poor national health care system…
    My family fought in the wars that mattered, the wars on American soil: American Revolution, Civil War. Many of our family friends’ ancestors did, as well. I have not spoken to anyone, in any state that favors amnesty, or quasi-amnesty. And yet these polling number, hhhm… I won’t insult Obama on this matter, because the problem did not begin with him, and his heritage probably suggests bias towards various opinions, and in America he is allowed his opinions, however, I will fault our legislatures if they vote against the concerns of a hundred-million citizens, many of whom are Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution; many of whom lost family blood in The Civil War. I think we each believe that under most circumstances America might allow significant numbers of legal immigrants into this nation (perhaps tens-of-thousands each year) for the reason of diversity, and new ideas – – that’s our heritage. Tens-of-millions of illegal immigrants? I’d ask how far this nation has sunk, but for what reason, we pass laws that require the federal government to borrow against our senior citizens’ social security retirement fund. Congress, go do your jobs: borrow more money, that isn’t yours to borrow – – the message from our President. His fault?Probably not, he he’s merely following precedent, not setting it.

  6. avatar
    Steve Paramore on

    Illegal alien ?…. Undocumented worker?…. Been in America 50 yeras as an illegal?….

    One solution……..

    Go home, submit proper forms and fees, recieve green card, come on back.

    The only proper solution.

    Any other answer is a reward for invading a sovereign nation, for breaking the law, and for not doing anything about it times ?? years.

  7. avatar

    It’s not much different than the type of questions we regularly hear from those calling themselves journalists. It’s all about keeping citizens from hearing arguments that would challenge the illegal immigration lobby or subjecting politicians to the sort of questions that might reflect that opposite point of view.

    Imagine a poll that asked:

    Do you want immigration to this country to be limited and legal?

    Ask those saying yes.

    Do you believe that is possible if those who are in the country in violation of our immigration laws have little fear of being removed, have access to employment and other benefits of being in the country and can expect to be receive the opportunity to permanently stay and even eventually become citizens?

    Ask those who say no.

    Do you believe the above accurately describes the conditions as they exist for illegal immigrants in this country?

  8. avatar

    I think this the FIRST place state & federal budget cuts could save my tax money from being squandered — bring our troops home to secure our home borders & cut all aid to muslem countries & use that money to build a strong border fence and deported ALL aliens with out proper permission to be in The United States of America

    • avatar
      Barbara Newsom on

      I agree with tom dollar. That sounds like a logical idea for all. That would clear a up a lot of problems,especially to bring our troops home , and cut all aid to Muslem countries.

      • avatar

        I disagree some of these people have been abused and I remember 25 years ago NOBODY cared and instead hired them and made money with them. We do not need a wall. Tom I hope the politicians are smarter than you are. “The Wall” is not needed there are other cheap & technological means to do this and I am appalled noboday has figured t out yet…so simple………….

  9. avatar


    Marco Rubio was on the Mark Levin radio show today (1/23)peddling his amnesty proposal, or “immigration principles.”

    Mark Levin has been a strong pro-enforcement ally, but even he appeared taken by Rubio’s talking points. Rubio stresses than none of the “getting in line stuff” (i.e., amnesty) happens until enforcement triggers and regarding the workforce and border are in place and “certified,” which appears to be different from what he told the Wall Street Journal and other media.

    Please outreach to Mark Levin, Roger Hedgecock and other talk radio hosts to let them know the many flaws with Rubio’s “immigration principles.”

    • avatar

      And just WHO decides when “enforcement triggers”? That’s been the sticking point. We’re continually told that our borders are secure, etc., but there’s no objective measure of this and the somewhat objective measures that do exist such as number of deportations have admittedly been inflated by ICE.

      • avatar

        Exactly!!! “We the People” have been bamboozled by the political class far too often to fall for the old “trust me” line, once again. Call, write and fax these sell outs until their stinkin’ ears bleed. The SAVE Act would have made enforcement mandatory incrementally over a period of years. Illegal aliens would have, evetually, had every incentive to stay here removed and they would have gone home, not to a gulag as liberals would like people to believe. It was agreat piece of legislation that was humane and would not have been shocking to our economy. Of course, it went nowhere because there was no amnesty provision.

        • avatar

          For a Dr u lack of critical thinking………We The People have bamboozled ourselves since ON ITS MAJORITY ENFORCEMENT IS ON US!!!!!! and we failed. Instead we got cheap labor and we got wealthier by using the illegals…………………that is the simple truth at least for the illegals that do work and have no criminal background…..

    • avatar

      I don’t believe in Rubio anyway because he was accused of using his Government credit card to fund a family reunion and help a personal friend secure a Government in return a brand new Cadillac for his mommy.

      The sad part is he never denied it and he was still elected in the Senate, I surely don’t think he qualifies to be President with that hanging over his head.

      • avatar

        I heard his brother was in the drug business. Also his grandfather came here from Cuba illegally without a visa…………………

  10. avatar

    Wonder what would happen if they explained that the “path to citizenship” means that for the most part they will not “pay taxes”, as is often the claim, but since they are overwhelmingly low education and low income they will become eligible for all sorts of government assistance like Medicaid and the earned income tax credit. Most people do not realize that the earned income tax credit is not a deduction, but a credit. In other words you can owe zero taxes on your income because it’s so low, but if you have enough dependents [as many of these people will] you get a check from the government of up to five thousand dollars. The public is being sold the usual bill of goods on immigration, Cheap labor for big business and the taxpayers pick up all their costs.

    • avatar

      Not exactly…….they would be under the microscope as opposed to half the population that never has and apparently will…..

  11. avatar

    Yes Ira, but It Gets Worse If You Read Obamacare Implentation

    If a state rejects giving Medicaid to the uninsured [the Supreme Court allows this BTW] and assuming approx 70% of the uninsured WILL NEED MEDICAID [I’ve read this in the past]….only the “legal immigrants” will get Medicaid [IAs never could] and the much larger group of poor, the LEGAL CITIZENS will not qualify for Medicaid. The same logic applies to the insurance choice consortium….the legal citizens in that rejected Medicaid state can’t qualify for that under Obamacare either.–politics.html

    This is what happens when we vote a bill in and we didn’t read it carefully enough.

    I see pitchforks and fires in the street over this “GLITCH” in states that reject Medicaid in Obamacare.

    • avatar

      This is also what happens when you vote a man into office that you know nothing about and refuse to see the evil in him. Four years from now you will be bowing to King obamma.

      • avatar
        Barbara Newsom on

        James McCurdy, you are so right. King Obama does not like America. He is not eligible to be the President of our country. When he was running for President, he didn’t even know how many states we had. He is a Muslim and proud of it, and we are in dire trouble, with him as our “so called” leader.