Poll: Increasing number of Americans say immigration should decrease

Gallup poll finds number of Americans who believe immigration should decline went up 10 points since May 2020.

Updated: August 9, 2022 - 12:51am

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An increasing number of Americans say immigration should decrease, according to a new Gallup poll released Monday,

Of the surveyed Americans, 38% say immigration should decrease, up 10 points from May of 2020, while another 27% say it should increase, down 7 points.

Comparatively, 31% say immigration should stay at its present level.

The increased drive for reducing immigration stems mainly from Republicans, with 69% of GOP voters saying that immigration levels should decrease, up 21 points from 2020.

Democrats, on the other hand, have also grown more pessimistic about immigration, with 17% of Democrats saying that immigration to the U.S. should decrease, up four points from 2020.

Comparatively, 33% of independents say immigration should decrease, up five points from 2020.

Although most Republicans and an increasing number of Democrats say that U.S. immigration needs to decrease now, most Americans say that the overall effect of immigration to the U.S. is a net positive.

The poll found that 70% of Americans on the whole think immigration is a good thing for this country today, compared to 24% who say it's a bad thing.

A large division arises, however, when looking at American age groups, with 83% of Americans between the ages of 18 to 34 saying immigration is good, compared to only 57% of Americans over 55.

Another significant divide arises between college graduates and those without college degrees, with 80% of college graduates saying immigration is good for the U.S., compared to 64% of Americans without college degrees.

Even though an increasing number of Americans say immigration levels need to decrease, the issue overall remains highly partisan, with 86% of Democrats saying immigration is good for the U.S. compared to 46% of Republicans.

"As a fairly young country, the United States has relied on immigration for its economic and cultural vitality, and Americans largely embrace it as beneficial," Gallup said. "But the border crisis of recent years has sparked a highly partisan debate about how to handle the large demand for entry to the U.S. from Central and South America, and that is likely affecting Americans' views toward immigration generally."