Just hours before the Arizona immigration law was scheduled to go into effect a new CNN poll found that a majority of Americans support the controversial legislation.
The survey, released jointly with the Opinion Research Corporation, suggests that 55 percent of respondents support the measure, while 40 percent oppose it.
There are also significant ethnic differences between the opponents, as only 34 percent of white people say they are against the law, while a whopping 71 percent of Hispanics express a similar view.
“Support for the Arizona law also varies by gender and age,” said Keating Holland, the news network’s polling director.
He explained that “nearly six in 10 older Americans and six in 10 men favor the measure. But only a bare majority of women and Americans under 50 years old think the law is a good idea."
However, the pollsters have cautioned that most of those surveyed did express concerns about possible discrimination of Hispanics, and said they were not hopeful the law would make a significant difference in terms of fixing the illegal immigration problem.
In recent weeks the Federal government as well as numerous civil rights groups have been suing Arizona in a Federal court claiming the new law is unconstitutional and may lead to racial profiling of minorities.