New polling data from Gallup shows that an overwhelming majority of Americans do not think handling immigration reform is even close to a top priority for 2014.
Immigration places well behind other issues like healthcare, jobs, the economy, dissatisfaction with Washington politicians, the debt and deficit, lack of money, ethics and moral issues, poverty, the gap between the rich and the poor, education, foreign aid and others. In fact, only three percent of Americans think the issue is a priority that must be dealt with this year.
“Americans start the new year with a variety of national concerns on their minds,” Gallup’s Lydia Saad wrote on Wednesday. “Although none is dominant, the government, at 21%, leads the list of what Americans consider the most important problem facing the country. The economy closely follows at 18%, and then unemployment/jobs and healthcare, each at 16%. No other issue is mentioned by as much as 10% of the public; however, the federal budget deficit or debt comes close, at 8%.”
In fact, immigration is so low among Americans’ priorities that Saad did not even mention it in her report on Gallup’s findings. It is, however, listed near the bottom of a chart of Americans’ priorities, slightly above welfare and “lack of respect for each other” as issues Americans think need to be dealt with.
Despite the fact that most Americans clearly do not think Congress or President Barack Obama should consider immigration issues a priority in 2014, House Speaker John Boehner and the rest of House GOP leadership are currently considering them a priority.
Boehner, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte, and Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), among others, are currently drafting immigration “principles” that will all but certainly recommend granting legal status to large swaths of illegal aliens in America while massively increasing the levels of legal immigration to the country.
In fact, the only way immigration issues would fit into the priorities of voters is if they are viewed through the lens of how economically devastating amnesty and a subsequent massive increase in legal immigration would be to American workers–something that affects jobs and the economy, two top priorities according to Gallup.
A little over a week ago, 16 House Republicans–led by Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL)–stepped forward to write to President Obama about how American workers would be displaced if these immigration reform proposals succeeded.
“Rapidly expanding unskilled immigration – at a time when factory work and blue collar jobs are disappearing – would represent the final economic blow for millions of workers who have been struggling to gain an economic foothold,” the members wrote. “Yet, despite this jobs crisis for American workers, the White House continues to advocate that CEOs and business executives seek lower cost labor. The White House has entertained a parade of high-powered business executives to discuss immigration policy, all while shutting out the concerns of everyday wage-earners who overwhelmingly oppose these measures. You even released an economic report saying that the ‘hospitality and leisure industry’ needs ‘legislation that would legalize workers in the U.S. and facilitate the lawful employment of future foreign-born workers.'”