It looks like a good way to make something really not popular is to get Donald Trump to support it.
Over at Mother Jones, Kevin Drum highlights some pretty interesting data: support for a massive US/Mexico border wall has plummeted among the American public ever since Trump publicly endorsed the idea.
A number of studies have found that Trump performed best in the primaries among the most anti-immigrant Republicans. But now, in the middle of the general election campaign, Trump is easily the most unpopular major party nominee in modern times. And his historic unpopularity may have also eroded support for the border wall.
The Pew Research Center gauged support for the border fence before and after June 2015, when Trump announced his candidacy. The percentage supporting the border fence was the exact same in 2007, 2011, and 2015: 46 percent. However, that dropped to 36 percent in March 2016.
In CBS/New York Times polls, public support for “building a wall along the US-Mexico border to try to stop illegal immigration” also dropped….The results from the RAND Corp’s Presidential Election Panel Survey (PEPS) are even more telling….The PEPS data reveal who was particularly likely to shift to opposing the border wall: people who did not like Trump in 2015.
….It appears, then, that Trump’s strong support for the border wall has made this policy considerably less popular with the American public.
It’s not just the border wall, either. The American electorate still strongly supports policies allowing undocumented immigrants to stay in the US over deportation-focused approaches.
Trump’s anti-immigrant plan may have won him success in the Republican primary, but when it comes to general election voters, that’s a whole different story.