By Steve Ralls, Latino Decisions
A new Immigration Equality/Latino Decisions poll of Latino voters shows strong support for immigration reform legislation that includes lesbian and gay binational couples. Support for ending the separation and exile faced by LGBT Americans who are unable to sponsor their partners for residency is strong among Latino Catholic and Evangelical voters as well. The poll, released today, shows that 64% of Latinos favor inclusive immigration reform.
When asked “how important is it that comprehensive immigration reform apply to gay and lesbian couples,” 92% those who expressed support felt it was very or somewhat important that immigration reform include lesbian and gay binational couples. Support for inclusion of those families also crossed faith lines, with 71% of Catholics, and 53% of Born-Again Christians supporting an inclusive immigration reform bill. Both U.S.-born (63%) and Foreign-Born (65%) Latino voters also expressed support.
“Immigration reform is more important to Latino voters than any other issue, and Latino Americans want that reform to include all families,” said Rachel B. Tiven, executive director of Immigration Equality. “Latino voters, like most voters, see family as family, whether gay or straight. These results underscore that an inclusive bill will have broad and deep support among people of faith. While some are using scare tactics about border security and the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community to distract from common-sense reform, our poll shows those tactics are nothing more than fear mongering. Among those most committed to fixing our broken immigration system, LGBT families have overwhelming support.”
Q1. As part of the immigration process, one member of a married couple who is a citizen is allowed to sponsor the other for residency. As part of the current debate regarding immigration reform, one proposal is that citizens who are lesbian or gay would also have the right to sponsor their partner for residency. Would you favor or oppose allowing gay and lesbian citizens to sponsor partners for residency?
Overall Favor 64%
Overall Oppose 24%
Catholic Favor 71%
Born-Again Favor 53%
Q2. In your view, how important is it that comprehensive immigration reform apply to gay and lesbian couples as well?
Overall Very Important 63%
Overall Somewhat Important 29%
Catholic Very Important 62%
Catholic Somewhat Important 32%
Born-Again Very Important 61%
Born Again Somewhat Important 31%
Q3. Forty-seven percent of gay and lesbian mixed-status couples are raising a U.S. citizen child. Given this information, how important is it that these children be able to keep both of their parents in the U.S.?
Overall Very Important 62%
Overall Somewhat Important 16%
Catholic Very Important 70%
Catholic Somewhat Important 14%
Born-Again Very Important 57%
Born-Again Somewhat Important 15%
Methodology: Latino Decisions interviewed 500 Latino citizens registered to vote, randomly selected nation-wide. Latinos were identified through a process that moves beyond surname and employs other markers of hispanicity, then screened for self-identification. Calls were made using both cell phones and landlines, and respondents were interviewed in language of choice, determined at the top of each call. The margin-of-error is +/- 4.4%.
This article was first published by Latino Decisions.
Immigration Equality is a national organization fighting for equality under U.S. immigration law for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and HIV-positive individuals.
Latino Decisions is the leader in Latino political opinion research. Founded by professors of political science, Dr. Gary M. Segura and Dr. Matt Barreto, the firm leverages a unique combination of analytical expertise and cultural competencies that are unparalleled in the industry. The team is comprised exclusively of credentialed research scientists with established publication records, rigorous methodological training, and experience with large-scale collaborative research projects. They employ professional insights and specialized technical skills to produce the most accurate information about Latino political attitudes, experiences and engagement.
[Photo by OneAmerica]