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On Immigration and Autos, GOP Candidates Collide With GOP Voters On Immigration and Autos, GOP Candidates Collide With GOP Voters On Immigration and Autos, GOP Candidates Collide With GOP Voters On Immigration and Autos,...

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On Immigration and Autos, GOP Candidates Collide With GOP Voters

Mitt Romney speaks at 2011 CPAC.(Chet Susslin)

February 29, 2012

Largely overlooked in the Arizona and Michigan showdowns between Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum were signs of resistance from GOP primary voters in each state to key positions held by both men.

Both Santorum and Romney have opposed any pathway to citizenship for the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S., with Romney embracing a policy of toughened workplace enforcement that would encourage "self-deportation."

But according to the CNN exit poll from Tuesday's Arizona primary, just 31 percent of Republican voters said that the U.S. should seek to deport all illegal immigrants. A 36 percent plurality instead they should be allowed to apply for citizenship; another 27 percent said they should be allowed to stay as temporary workers.

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