Stephen Dinan, Washington Times, November 6, 2007
Voters oppose driver’s licenses for illegal aliens by a nearly five-to-one margin, a new Fox 5/Washington Times/Rasmussen Reports poll finds.
As immigration politics explode into the presidential race, polls show Americans are taking a hard line on benefits for illegal aliens, including opposing driver’s licenses and such taxpayer-funded benefits as scholarships at state colleges for illegal-alien students.
The new poll found 77 percent of the adults surveyed opposed making driver’s licenses available to illegal aliens, while just 16 percent supported the idea.
Licenses fared poorly across party lines, including near-blanket opposition among self-identified Republicans, at 88 percent. Among independents and Democrats, it was still overwhelmingly unpopular, drawing 75 percent and 68 percent opposition, respectively.
But those on the other side, including Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Christopher J. Dodd and the entire Republican presidential field, oppose the idea.
On the issue of public benefits, the poll’s sample of California voters found 62 percent opposed state-sponsored college scholarships for children of illegal aliens, while 24 percent supported the concept.
The idea was unpopular in both parties, with Republicans opposed by a margin of 81 percent to 11 percent, and Democrats against it by 50 percent to 33 percent.
Meanwhile, on the issue of enforcement, the poll’s sample of 500 Texas voters found strong support for a crackdown: 75 percent said they favor police officers automatically checking legal status during traffic stops, and 66 percent said if someone stopped turns out to be illegal, they should be deported.
Even legal immigrants didn’t fare well in the polling.