Democratic Pollsters and Strategists Join Immigration Experts to Assess Immigration’s Role Ahead of 2024 Elections

Democratic Pollsters and Strategists Join Immigration Experts to Assess Immigration’s Role Ahead of 2024 Elections

By America’s Voice

Washington, DC – In the wake of Tom Suozzi’s special election victory and news that the Biden administration may implement executive actions on the border, Democratic pollsters and strategists convened a press briefing with immigration experts focused on examining the role of immigration issue in an election year. The speakers discussed the latest on immigration politics, informed by the latest ongoing polling and tracking of how parties, candidates, and voters – including Latino voters – are viewing immigration and border issues.

Matt Barreto, President & Co-founder, BSP Research, said: “In poll after poll, Americans want Congress to address the border, but Republicans have completely given up. President Biden is committed to increasing resources, funding, and more agents to address the border to ensure our border is safe, secure, and properly managed. If Republicans do not come back to the table to make a deal on the border, Biden and Democrats will be the only ones left standing who are trying to secure the border and will have the upper hand on the issue in November.  Trump will not be able to blame Biden, he can only blame Congressional Republicans for backing away from a border deal. The polling is clear, Americans want increased funding for border security, and they also support helping longtime immigrants in the U.S. such as dreamers and spouses of citizens. Trump wants to reinstate oppressive deportation forces to separate families and put U.S. born kids in detention centers, and just like in 2018, that is a losing strategy for Republicans.

Celinda Lake, President at Lake Research Partners, said: “Voters whole-heartedly reject leaders and candidates who use racist language, tropes and attempt to ‘otherize’ immigrants, blaming them for all our country’s ills. Americans want solutions and they expect their leaders to act responsibly, civilly and to work together to solve problems. President Biden and Democrats have a golden opportunity to remind voters of the racism and xenophobia that Trump and MAGA Republicans deploy at every turn to divide and create resentment among Americans, and that it’s Democrats who offer practical, pragmatic approaches that move our country forward.”

Fernand Amandi, President/CEO at Bendixen & Amandi International, said: “A tectonic shift took place during and after the Suozzi victory. Given the problems in the New York area with Mayor Eric Adams talking about the influx of migrants…they [Republicans] thought they had the ultimate winning issue here. What ended up being the Republican perceived ace in the hole here politically on this issue of immigration and crime has now become the Republican albatross. On the brink of passage of the [Senate] legislative document, Republicans all of a sudden for very naked, political considerations announced by President Trump – and we saw the craven response by Speaker Mike Johnson – in the voters’ eyes became a sign that Republicans were unserious about actually doing anything about this issue and we saw that play out in real time.”

Maria Cardona, Democratic strategist, said: “The Trump Administration assaulted and destroyed our legal immigration system and our enforcement infrastructure while they ripped babies from the arms of their mothers. If Trump gets another four years, he will finish what he started, eviscerate all legal pathways of coming to this country while continuing to weaponize immigration, and demonize and attack immigrants. President Biden and Democrats have a unique opportunity to show Americans they know how to solve this issue in a bi-partisan, humane, balanced way that strengthens our border and expands legal pathways and work permits for immigrants who have contributed trillions to our economy. It is what voters want and deserve.”

Kerri Talbot, Executive Director of the Immigration Hub, said: “Given the gridlock in Congress, the Biden-Harris administration should use its executive authority to secure the resources for a fair and efficient immigration system. The American people want balanced solutions that bring order and humanity to the border and provide legal pathways for undocumented immigrants in the U.S., including Dreamers and other long-term residents who have been waiting years for relief. This approach would be much more effective than the extreme proposals reportedly under consideration, such as an asylum ban, which was already struck down in the courts.”

Vanessa Cardenas, Executive Director of America’s Voice (host and moderator): “Americans are concerned about the border and we also know they are supportive of immigrants and the role immigrants play in turbo-charging our economy. Americans also want comprehensive, common-sense solutions to modernize our immigration system to better serve America. Democrats have been playing defense on the issue for far too long, often lacking a clear vision and strategy for modernizing our immigration system, ceding the field to an increasingly extreme, shrill, and violent view presented by the GOP and other radicals.

That equation has changed. The GOP negotiated and then defeated their own legislation on border security, revealing what most observers already know: they have no interest in solutions, prefer advancing ugly rhetoric to inflame their base, and are held captive by Trump. At the same time, now Cong. elect Tom Suozzi in New York helped chart a new way forward on immigration. First, he stepped up and engaged the issue head-on. Second, he offered both a positive view of immigrants and their contributions, as well as concern for a strong border. Combined, these two recent developments offer a clear way forward for Democrats, from the President on down. Mainly: do not cede the space to Republicans, lean in, and demonstrate support for immigration and an orderly, humane, and safe immigration system.”

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