05/15/2006 - The immigrant population of most predominantly Republican "red" counties and swing counties is relatively small. Yet residents of red and swing counties are significantly more opposed to immigration - both legal and illegal - than are residents of predominantly Democratic "blue" counties, where immigrants are much more populous, according to the Pew Research Center.
The overall population of red counties is 93% native-born, with just 7% born outside the U.S. Fully 59% of red-county residents live in places where fewer than one-in-20 people are foreign-born. By contrast, blue counties have more than twice as many foreign-born residents (17% overall); about one-in-three blue-county residents (34%) live in areas where foreign-born people make up a fifth or more of the total population.
The demographic makeup of politically contested swing counties is far more similar to Republican parts of the country than Democratic areas. Just 8% of the population in highly contested counties was born outside the U.S., and a 44% plurality lives in areas where fewer than one-in-20 are foreign-born.
About half of the residents of both red and swing counties believe that immigrants threaten American customs and values. And a solid majority of those in red counties (57%), and nearly as many people living in swing counties (54%) believe that immigrants living in the U.S. illegally should be required to go home. That compares with 44% of people living in blue counties.
Read the full analysis Attitudes Toward Immigration In Red and Blue on the Pew Research Center Web site.