Politics Biden administration handling likely to make border security key 2022 campaign issue for GOP
Biden bets that he can change how America thinks about migration
The president is facing a political pinch over the border. His solution for it: more nuance.They don’t just want to push back on their critics, they want to change the very way Americans view migration.
The crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border is sapping support from the Biden administration over the issue, polls show, making Democrats increasingly vulnerable in the 2022 midterm elections.
Forty-four percent of people approve of the job President Joe Biden is doing on border security. But 55% say they disapprove, according to anreleased in early April.
And that type of public concern over the Biden administration approach to the tens of thousands of illegal border crossers isn't new. Afrom late March found 15% of voters identified security issues, which includes border security, as their top set of concerns. That marked a 4 percentage point jump since Biden took office in late January.
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Senate elections typically happen only every two years -- except sometimes they're three years in a row.Democrats picked up two seats in November 2020. They won two more in Georgia runoffs in January 2021. And in 2022, they'll be fighting to keep control of the evenly divided chamber, where Vice President Kamala Harris is the tie-breaking vote.
As caravans of illegal immigrants travel to the U.S.-Mexico border, groups of congressional Republicans are visiting border facilities to talk to local law enforcement, politicians, and other officials about the pressure their communities are under as a result of the migrant crisis, which includes home invasions, shoot-outs, and late-night car chases.
The immigration issue helped catapult former President Donald Trump into the White House in 2016. The Biden administration's challenges stemming the flow of migrants at the border has kept the issue in the headlines since the president's inauguration on Jan. 20.
Last week, eight Republican Study Committee members, led by Rep. Jim Banks of Indiana, visited the border in the area of Del Rio around the same time House Minority Whip Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana led a group of 10 lawmakers on a two-day tour of the border region in Mission, Texas.
Joe Biden's Approval Rating Weighed Down by Border Crisis, Gun Policy
Despite a positive overall job approval, a majority of Americans have an unfavorable view of the president's handling of immigration and firearms legislation.According to an AP-NORC poll, 56 percent of people disapprove of Biden's stance on immigration, with 55 percent disapproving on the current border situation—the two worst readings of the issues included.
Banks, in an interview with The Washington Examiner, said Republicans will make the immigration issue a top priority in the next election cycle.
“It's an issue that my constituents, my voters, are paying close attention to. And that will absolutely be an election issue in 2022 if this administration doesn't immediately do something about it,” he said.
A month earlier, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and a dozen GOP members visited the U.S.-Mexico border area south of San Antonio andcrossing the border who were on the U.S. terrorist watch list.
“You saw it in their eyes,” McCarthy said, talking about border patrol agents he spoke with. “They talked about, ‘They’re on the list.’ … The terrorist watch list.”
In ato his fellow RSC members on Monday, Banks emphasized Biden’s reversal and loosening of Trump’s immigration policies.
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“By the time President Trump left office, America’s border agents and ICE officers had the strongest set of tools ever created to protect and defend the territory of the United States,” Banks wrote. “Let us be very, very clear: the decision to rescind these proven policies — and to instead implement Catch-and-Release — is the SOLE reason for the current state of emergency."
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Opinion: Republicans are politicizing the border and children's lives .
Julián Castro writes that Republicans' fear-mongering and gaslighting regarding the increase in unaccompanied migrant minors in the US southern border shows a disturbing hypocrisy and how detached from reality they are.Like the children arriving at our border every day, my grandmother came to the US from Mexico at seven years old seeking a better life. She worked as a maid, a cook and a babysitter to provide for her family. Two generations later, one of her grandsons is serving in Congress and the other had the opportunity to serve in President Barack Obama's cabinet.