A plurality of Americans support allowing undocumented citizens to stay and pursue a path to citizenship, according to the latest poll. (Photo/Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images)

Poll: As immigration bill nears, American’s support for a path to citizenship grows

The majority of Americans think undocumented immigrants should be allowed to stay in the U.S. and apply for eventual citizenship, according to a new Quinnipiac poll out today. Fifty-nine percent of Americans say this comes closest to describing their views. This shows an increase in support; two months ago, a previous Quinnipiac poll found 56 percent of those polled shared this view.

Only 11 percent say those without legal documentation should not be allowed a path to citizenship. A quarter of those polled — 25 percent — think undocumented immigrants should be required to leave the U.S.

The poll found a plurality of support for a path to citizenship regardless of race, religion and education.

In terms of race, support for a path to citizenship is 73 percent among blacks and 72 percent among Latinos polled.  Broken down by religion, 57 percent of Catholics polled support a path to citizenship; it was 51 percent for Protestants.

Sixty-six percent of Americans with a college degree say undocumented immigrants should stay and eventually become citizens, and 56 percent of those without a college degree support this too.

Broken down by partisan affiliation, 73 percent of Democrats and 54 percent of Independents support allowing undocumented immigrants to stay and pursue a path to citizenship; the figure is 47 percent among Republicans.

RELATED: 4 out of 5 Americans support a path to citizenship

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