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New poll finds that 90 percent of undocumented living in the US would apply for citizenship once immigration reform has been introduced Photo by: Google Images

90 percent of undocumented in the US want citizenship once immigration reform is passed

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New poll finds that 90 percent of undocumented living in the US would apply for citizenship once immigration reform has been introduced Photo by: Google Images

We've had a glut of polls about immigration reform that test the attitudes of the broad American public, but what about undocumented immigrants themselves?

According to ABC News, a new poll this week asking undocumented immigrants whether they would apply for full citizenship if a comprehensive immigration reform bill passes received a nine in ten yes vote (87 percent), confirming they would do so.

Thirteen percent said they did not know or were not sure if they would seek citizenship.

The survey was conducted by pollsters interviewing 400 undocumented Latinos, a group that's otherwise not easy to poll.

Meanwhile, the Senate is expected to take up an immigration bill this week.

The proposed legislation would reportedly provide a path to citizenship for many of the estimated eleven million undocumented immigrants living and working here. But it would exclude undocumented people living here without authorization who arrived after December 2011 from applying for legal status, and then citizenship.

Republicans note that two-thirds of the 5.4 million legal Mexican immigrants to the U.S. who are eligible for citizenship have still not applied. Only 40 percent of the 2.7 million granted a green card under the 1986 amnesty bill had become naturalized citizens by 2009.

'I've practiced immigration law for 15 years and I've dealt with thousands and thousands of people and not one of them said 'I need a pathway to citizenship,' Congressman Raul Labrador, who is negotiating an immigration bill in the House, told ABC.

But immigrants rights groups counter that undocumented immigrants want full citizenship, since most now have deep ties in in United States.

Eighty-five percent of undocumented immigrants polled this week said they know a family member who is a U.S. citizen. Sixty-two percent said they have a U.S.-born child, who are automatically granted citizenship. Almost eight in ten said they came to the U.S. for a better job for themselves or more opportunity for their family and children.

Sixty-eight percent said they have been living here for more than a decade, twenty percent said they have been here between five and ten years, and only eleven percent said they have been here for five years or less.

In the past undocumented immigrants may have had a weaker appetite for citizenship. But after years of botched immigration reform attempts and establishing deep roots in the U.S. immigrants rights groups say things might be different this time.

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