Friday, May 7, 2021

The Democrats' Immigration Problem

The public wants more border security and fewer asylum-seekers at the border, even as they want asylum seekers and unaccompanied minors treated humanely if they do show up. Such are the contradictions of the public's views on immigration.
What the public is getting is an historic surge at the border, overwhelmed facilities and now the administration has committed itself to a much higher 62,500 person ceiling on refugee intake for the next six months. Meanwhile, Biden's approval rating on immigration is dreadful and the salience of immigration in general and illegal immigration in particular is spiking.
See the charts below from Pew and The Economist. The Democrats are in a very difficult position. They are under considerable pressure from activists and the party's left to be much more liberal at the border. But that will neither solve the problem nor accord with the public's wishes.
They may get lucky and the issue will cease to rise and perhaps decline in salience. But then again it may not. It's a ticking time bomb that the Democrats cannot wish away.

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