Border crisis turns Hispanic voters in Republicans’ favor

by Trinity Cardinal

Marion Bae, FISM News

 

On Wednesday Quinnipiac released a poll that could show a fatal trend for the Democratic party going into the 2022 mid-term elections. 

The recently released Quinnipiac poll asked Americans of voting age if they approve or disapprove of the job Joe Biden is doing as president. Notably, 54% of Hispanic voters polled disapproved, with only 26% approving.

The poll asked the same question again but with an option to strongly approve or strongly disapprove. When asked, 12% of Hispanic voters strongly approved with 41% strongly disapproving.

This drop in approval from Hispanic voters is particularly significant since Biden won 59% of the Hispanic vote in the 2020 election, according to a study by Pew Research. Pew noted in their findings that, “…Hispanic voters are not a monolith; there is substantial diversity within the Hispanic electorate,” referring to the Cuban American population, which leans Republican, and could swing elections in the state of Florida. 

While all voting demographics are diverse, one issue that could be driving this broad migration of Hispanic voters is the ongoing border crisis. An earlier Quinnipiac poll from October 2021 showed that, when asked about Biden’s handling of immigration issues, 69% of Hispanic voters disapproved. Similarly, when asked specifically about the Mexican border crisis, 68% disapproved. The issues at the southern border have only worsened since this poll was taken.

From October 2021, when the poll was taken, to March 2022, nearly 1,061,000 border crossings were reported. For context, from January 2020 to December 2020, President Donald Trump’s last year in office, just under 548,000 crossings were reported. Under the Biden administration nearly twice as many migrants crossed the southern border in just six months as crossed under Trump’s administration in one year. 

Democratic politicians, including those running the White House, have failed to address these concerns. As a result, the situation has continued to worsen, forcing states to take matters into their own hands. Though immigration is a federal issue, and states are not permitted to make foreign policy decisions, many legislators in border states seem to feel that they have been left with no choice.

In November, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said he would have illegal immigrants, who were being flown into Florida, taken by bus to President Biden’s home state of Delaware. In Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott recently offered illegal immigrants the opportunity to be taken to Washington D.C. in buses, and many of them have gone. 

A Pew Research study in 2020 showed that half of the United States’ Hispanic population lived in southwest border states, with dense populations in Texas and Florida. It’s no coincidence that, while the border crisis continues to worsen in these states and the federal government fails to act, Hispanic voters are looking favorably at the Republican legislators in their States working hard to fix the issues.

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