POLL: Majority of Religious Groups Support Biden's Immigration Plan

Figure showing Americans who think immigrants pose cultural and economical threat, by religious affiliation. From 2020 American Values Survey by PRRI.

President Joe Biden signed a flurry of immigration executive actions on his first day of office including a reversal of the ban on travelers from Muslim majority countriesa proclamation cutting off funding for the border wall, and strengthening the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. 

survey released by PRRI (Public Religion Research Institute) found that the American public sentiment, across most religious groupsis much closer to the policies the Biden administration is proposing than those put in place by the Trump administration.  

"The new immigration priorities and policies favored by the Biden administration will bring U.S. policy more in line with long-standing American public opinion, which has consistently reflected a more compassionate and pragmatic approach to these complex issues,” said Robert P. Jones, founder, and CEO of PRRI. 

Here are some of the findings:  

DACA: Legal Resident Status for Dreamers 


Majorities of every religious group favor DACA, including more than seven in ten religiously unaffiliated Americans (74%), Hispanic Catholics (72%), and members of non-Christian religions (72%). About six in ten Hispanic Protestants (64%), white Catholics (62%), white mainline Protestants (61%), and other Christians (58%) favor DACA, as do 52% of white evangelical Protestants.  

A Path to Citizenship for Those Living in the U.S. Illegally 

Majorities of every religious group believe undocumented immigrants should have an opportunity to become U.S. citizens, including about three in four religiously unaffiliated Americans (73%) and about two-thirds of members of non-Christian religions (66%), white mainline Protestants (65%), and Black Protestants (63%). 

Majorities of Hispanic Catholics (61%), white Catholics (59%), white evangelical Protestants (58%), and other Christians (56%) also support a path to citizenship. Among religious groups, Hispanic Protestants (50%) are least supportive of this policy. 

Opposition to Preventing Refugees from Entering the U.S. 

White evangelical Protestants stand out as the only religious group among whom a majority favor this policy (40% oppose; 58% favor).  

Majorities of all religious groups oppose passing legislation that prevents refugees from entering the United States, including large shares of the religiously unaffiliated (77%), members of non-Christian religions (73%), Hispanic Catholics (68%), Black Protestants (67%), other Christians (60%), and Hispanic Protestants (54%). Majorities of white Catholics (58%) and white mainline Protestants (53%) also oppose legislation banning refugees.