Immigration is the fourth most important issue facing the country, according to a recent survey of 1,500 U.S. adults conducted by The Economist and YouGov. Respondents ranked only healthcare, the economy, and climate change as more pressing issues.
With an ongoing border crisis that's now entering its eighth month, immigration ranking fourth may not sound like a big deal. But the percentage of respondents who ranked immigration as the most important issue jumped by 42% compared with the same poll from just a few weeks earlier. This is a significant jump in public opinion, considering the extremely limited media coverage of events along the border.
On the immigration question, 48% said the issue was "very important", while another 32% said the issue was "somewhat important".
What should be most concerning for the Biden Administration is the major shift among white men with a college degree. This group, which was pivotal for electing Biden to the White House, ranked immigration as the most important issue overall.
A new Quinnipiac poll should also be concerning for the Biden Administration. Most significantly, the poll found that 69% of Hispanics disapprove of Pres. Biden's handling of immigration.
While some may think that the administration's failure to deliver on one of its signature issues -- amnesty for illegal aliens -- is driving the result, the poll found the opposite. 41% of Hispanics think that the Biden Administration isn't aggressive enough in its enforcement of immigration laws compared with just 20% who think the administration's efforts are appropriate.
On the border crisis, 67% of all respondents disapprove of Pres. Biden's handling of the issue, including 96% of Republicans and 73% of Independents. In fact, Pres. Biden is upside down across every demographic group except for Democrats. But even amongst Democrats, 50% either disapprove or didn't express an opinion.
Despite the recent polling, the Biden Administration seems to be doubling-down on its immigration agenda. In recent weeks, it has made public new regulations to rescind the successful Remain-in-Mexico policy and to reissue Pres. Obama's DACA executive amnesty.
Further, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas issued new enforcement priorities last week, protecting most illegal aliens from removal. Meanwhile, the administration and Senate Democrats continue to look for a way to grant amnesty to illegal aliens through the budget reconciliation effort that is acceptable to Senate Parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough.
Trump voters most concerned about negative impacts of mass immigration
Americans who voted for former President Donald Trump in 2020 are deeply concerned that mass immigration could adversely affect their job prospects and wages, according to polling released by the University of Virginia on Thursday.
61% of Trump voters expressed concern over receiving lower pay due to high levels of immigration. 59% are concerned that high immigration could prevent them from getting a higher paying job, and 51% are concerned that high immigration could cost them their job.
While Biden voters weren't as concerned about future job and wage prospects, they did express concern over higher taxes and increased crime due to uncontrolled illegal immigration.
CHRIS CHMIELENSKI is the Deputy Director for NumbersUSA
Updated: Mon, Oct 25th 2021 @ 2:40pm EDT