41% of New Yorkers support construction of border wall: Siena poll

Respondents who identified as Republican were far more likely than their Democratic counterparts to support a wall.

New York is a sanctuary state for illegal immigrants, however, as newcomers continue to put a strain on an already struggling system, a growing number of residents have expressed a desire to secure the southern border and quell the influx of people entering the United States unlawfully.

A poll recently conducted by the Siena College Research Institute found that while New Yorkers still skew towards supporting policies that support illegal immigrants, a sizable portion want to see policies that put the safety and well-being of Americans first.

According to the poll, which surveyed 800 people between September 5 and 8, 41 percent of residents across New York state said they support the construction of a wall down the entire length of the border with Mexico. A similar percentage of the population agreed that migrants "take more in resources than they return in economic activity."

"When it comes to migrants and issues associated with immigration, there is a huge partisan divide," SCRI Director Don Levy explained, pointing out that, "Democrats overwhelmingly support easier work authorizations and the use of federal properties to house recent migrants," while, "majorites of Republicans oppose both proposals."

Respondents who identified as Republican were far more likely than their Democratic counterparts to support a wall, 77 versus 24 percent, and believe that migrants were a burden to the system, 69 versus 24 percent. 

Whether or not New Yorkers saw current migrants as the "source of illegal drugs entering our country" also depended on political affiliation. Nearly 70 percent of Republicans said that statement was true, compared to just 26 percent of Democrats. GOP voters were also more likely to believe that those trying to immigrate to the United States are "dangerous" and "potentially criminal."

Despite being hit particularly hard by the recent wave of migrants, New York City residents held similar views to those living in the suburbs and upstate.
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