Majority Of Americans Now Back Trump-Style Border Wall: Poll

Authored by Tom Ozimek via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

Illegal immigration has become a key concern of voters this election year, with a new poll showing that, for the first time in the survey’s history, a majority of Americans support building a wall along the U.S.–Mexico border.

President Donald Trump inspects border wall prototypes in San Diego on Mar. 13, 2018. (Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)

With record numbers of illegal immigrants pouring into the country, public concern about the border crisis is higher during President Joe Biden’s term than under the prior two administrations, according to a Monmouth University poll released on Feb. 26.

More than six in 10 Americans think illegal immigration is a “very serious” problem, a sharp increase from 2015 and 2019, when prior Monmouth polls found that 43 percent and 49 percent, respectively, held that view.

When adding people who think illegal immigration is a somewhat serious problem (23 percent), the percentage of Americans who are concerned about the border crisis stands at 84 percent.

“Illegal immigration has taken center stage as a defining issue this presidential election year,” Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said in a statement.

It’s estimated that more than 10 million illegal immigrants have crossed the border since President Biden took office.

Support Soars for Border Wall

Concern about illegal immigration is so high, in fact, that for the first time since Monmouth began asking Americans for their views on the matter in 2015, a majority (58 percent) of the public supports building a border wall.

Before the current poll, the highest percentage of Americans who supported a border wall was 48 percent (in 2015); the lowest was 35 percent (in 2017).

Another notable finding is that a strong majority (61 percent) of Americans say that immigrants seeking asylum at the border should be made to wait in Mexico while their claims are processed.

The border wall was former President Donald Trump’s signature project, and Republicans have credited his “Remain in Mexico” policy—a centerpiece of border enforcement during his tenure but canceled by President Biden—with reducing the influx of illegal immigrants into the country.

Roughly 450 miles of the larger border wall were built when President Trump was in office, a project that President Biden criticized. An internal Department of Homeland Security memo found that physical barriers are the most cost-effective tool to deter illegal border-crossing activity.

President Biden has taken a dim view of his predecessor’s vision for a grand barrier, pledging while still a presidential candidate in 2020 that there wouldn’t be “another foot of wall constructed” in his administration.

On the day he took office, President Biden issued a proclamation that rescinded the national emergency declaration that President Trump had relied on to divert some $10 billion from Pentagon coffers to border wall construction.

The Biden administration later quietly auctioned off millions of dollars of border wall materials, for which it faced sharp criticism from Republicans.

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the reported death of Alexei Navalny from the Roosevelt Room of the White House, on Feb. 16, 2024. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

Although concern about illegal immigration has risen the most among Republicans (91 percent said it’s very serious), all voter groups have grown more worried about the border crisis, the Monmouth poll showed.

In a potential blow to President Biden’s chances at reelection, 58 percent of independents said illegal immigration is a very serious problem, up from a little more than 40 percent who said the same thing in 2015 and 2019.

State-Level Border Wall Efforts

Shortly after taking office, President Biden signed an executive order scrapping federal construction of the border wall.

In a proclamation on Jan. 20, 2021, he called the wall a “waste of money that diverts attention from genuine threats to our homeland security.”

Following President Biden’s decision to scrap the wall, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, announced he would seek funding for his state to build its own border barrier, which came as the influx of illegal immigrants into Texas swelled to near-record proportions.

In December 2021, Texas officially started building its own state-funded border wall. At the time, Mr. Abbott alleged that President Biden “refuses to enforce laws passed by Congress to secure the border and enforce immigration laws” and so “Texas is stepping up to do the federal government’s job.”

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (C) speaks at a press conference at the state capitol in Austin, Texas, on June 16, 2021. (Mei Zhong/The Epoch Times)

Recently, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem ordered the state’s National Guard troops to help Texas with border wall construction.

The border in a warzone, so we’re sending soldiers,” Ms. Noem, a Republican, said in a Feb. 20 statement.

South Dakota was the first state to deploy National Guard troops in response to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s call 2 1/2 years ago for help securing the border.

In October 2023, the Biden administration waived 26 federal laws in south Texas to allow for the construction of another 20 miles of border wall.

At the time, President Biden explained that the reason for resuming border wall construction was that the money had already been appropriated and attempts to redirect the funds to other projects failed.

There’s nothing under the law other than they have to use the money for what it was appropriated for. I can’t stop that,” President Biden said at the time.

Asked by reporters whether he thought the border wall was effective, he replied, “No.”

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