Seventy Percent of Arizonans Favor Law Authorizing Local Police to Identify Illegal Aliens

By | April 22, 2010 | 3:43 PM EDT

( - Seventy percent of likely Arizona voters approve of legislation passed by their state legislature this week that would require local law enforcement officers in the state to make a "reasonable attempt" to determine the immigration status of someone they suspect is in the country illegally, according to a Rasmussen poll.
The Arizona legislature approved th bill on Monday, and unless Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R.) vetoes it by Saturday, it will become law.
The Rasmussen Report poll conducted on April 15 asked 500 likely Arizona voters:  “Do you favor or oppose legislation that authorizes local police to stop and verify the immigration status of anyone they suspect of being an illegal immigrant?”
Seventy percent said the favored the legislation, and only 23 percent said they opposed it. Six percent said they were not sure about it.
Even a majority of Arizona Democratic voters supported the bill, with 51 percent saying they favored it. Eighty-four percent of Republicans and 69% of non-aligned voters said they favored the bill.
With some critics of the legislation concerned that it will lead to racial profiling, the poll also asked:  “How concerned are you that efforts to identify and deport illegal immigrants will also end up violating the civil rights of some U.S. citizens?” Twenty-three percent said they were very concerned, 30 percent said they were somewhat concerned, 28 percent said they were not very concerned, 18 percent said they were not at all concerned. One percent said they were not sure.

The Arizona bill says: “For any lawful contact made by a law enforcement official or agency of this state or a county, city, town or other political subdivision of this state where a reasonable suspicion exits that the person is an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States, a reasonable attempt shall be made, when practicable, to determine the immigration status of the person.”