I have written before about how Rhode Island's new Independent line Governor, Linc Chalfee, not only has revoked a prior Executive Order that state vendors utilize the E-verify program, but also has been trying to stymie other cooperation with federal immigration authorities.
The presumption that a true blue state like Rhode Island would be against immigration enforcement is contradicted by a Brown University poll, misleadingly released under the headline "Rhode Islanders deeply divided on immigrants and immigration policy."
In fact, there is no deep divide; the poll shows strong majority support for an Arizona-style law. Here is the question and answer breakdown in the Brown poll:
"Are you aware of the illegal immigration law that was recently passed in Arizona? a) Yes, 71%; b) No, 29%.So 54% strongly or somewhat support an Arizona-style law, while only 37% strongly or somewhat oppose such a law, and Brown spins that as the public being "deeply divided"?
How much do you support or oppose the approach that Arizona is taking on immigration? a) strongly support, 32%; b) somewhat support, 22%; c) neither support nor oppose, 10%; d) somewhat oppose, 14%; e) strongly oppose, 23%."
In fact, the depth of that support is evidenced by the fact that Rhode Islanders are willing to increase taxes for enforcement:
"If the Arizona law were enacted in our state, how much would you support or oppose a tax increase to pay for additional police to enforce immigration law? a) strongly support/somewhat support, 54%; b) neither support nor oppose, 10%, c) somewhat oppose/ strongly oppose, 36%."The Providence Journal picked up on the spin, with an article headlined "Brown poll shows divide on immigration issues in RI."
The conventnional wisdom is that a strong immigration policy is a losing proposition for Republicans. Really? Tell that to Democratic Rhode Island.
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