In a new survey of more than 1,500 U.S. adults, Fox News was the most trusted television news source "to provide accurate information about politics and current events." The news channel, part of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. (FOXA), was rated "most trusted" by 25% of respondents. Network news from CBS, ABC and NBC was rated "most trusted" by 23% of respondents.
The survey was conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that according to the website is "dedicated to research at the intersection of religion values, and public life" in partnership with the Brookings Institution. The survey included 25 questions and was conducted between April 7 and 27 of this year.
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The title of the survey is "Religion, Values and Immigration Reform" and included several questions about immigration and U.S. immigration policy, and the answers were displayed along with responses to a similar survey done in 2013. Some 23% of respondents in both years said the current immigration system in the United States is "completely broken." Another 69% said the system was partially working, though more respondents thought the system was mostly broken.
Most of those surveyed, 62% this year and 63% last year, said that illegal immigrants should be allowed to become citizens provided they meet certain requirements. Just 22% think immigrants take jobs away from U.S. citizens, while 70% think immigrants take jobs Americans do not want. When asked whether illegal immigrants help the U.S. economy by providing low-cost labor or hurt the economy by keeping wages down, respondents were evenly split at 45% and 46% respectively.
Nearly half -- 47% -- of respondents believe that over the past five or six years illegal immigration has increased in the United States, while just 25% believe that the number of illegal immigrants who are deported has increased and 45% believe deportations have stayed about the same.
For the record, the number of illegal immigrants estimated to be residing in the United States in 2011 was 11.5 million, according to the Department of Homeland Security. The agency raised the estimate to 11.6 million in March of 2012. The year-over-year increase is less than 1%.
Between 2007 and 2012 (the last year for which statistics are available) deportations increased from 318,000 to nearly 410,000. Deportations have nearly doubled since 2003, when 210,000 illegal immigrants were deported. Of the 410,000 deported in 2012, 55% were convicted criminals and 21% were repeat violators of immigration laws.
The PRRI also asked which political party did a respondent trust to do a better job with immigration issues. The Democrats were the choice of 46%, while Republicans were the choice of 33%.
By a margin of 51% to 47%, respondents mostly or completely agree that "the American way of life needs to be protected against foreign influence." However only 16% completely or mostly agree that "the idea of [an] America where most people are not white bothers me."
And on the question of political gridlock, more than half of those surveyed prefer to see the two houses of Congress controlled by different political partners.
And when it comes to how respondents formed their opinions, 75% watch local news programs, 42% listen to talk radio, 54% listen to public radio, 62% use an online source, 57% read newspapers or magazines and 69% watch cable TV news.