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ICYMI: “Trump backfire: Americans increasingly embrace ‘nation of immigrants’ history and future”

 

Facing impeachment, Donald Trump’s reelection strategy has become a full on attempt to stop immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers from entering the country. But the ugliness of Trump’s many attacks, policies and plans continue to backfire. The reality is that the more Trump has sought to isolate America, the more Americans welcome a melting pot. In his USA Today article, pollster Stanley Greenberg underscores Trump’s dilemma on immigration, that the more he uses immigrants and immigration to tune up his base, the more the rest of the country is adopting a more positive sentiment: that our nation is built proudly on our immigrant tradition. 

In other words, the prominent and influential Democratic pollster finds, Trump’s divisive anti-immigrant and anti-refugee rhetoric and actions aren’t working with the majority of Americans. Americans are increasingly aware of Trump’s tactics of distraction, division and hate, and aren’t buying it, Greenberg argues.

The article is excerpted below and can be found in its entirety here:

Donald Trump came down the escalator at Trump Tower in June 2015, lamented that Mexico sends us its worst, murderers and rapists. His convention speech featured mothers whose loved ones were murdered by illegal immigrants, and he attacked Hillary Clinton for supporting open borders. Later, according to a new book, he proposed moats, alligators, flesh-piercing spikes and shooting immigrants in the legs as they crossed the border.

He succeeded in raising the importance of immigration as a voting issue and defining difference between the parties. But it hasn’t worked out as planned. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.

Some swing white working-class voters shifted to Trump on immigration in 2016, yet the proportion of voters who wanted to create a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants went up overall. Then, as president, Trump tried to implement a Muslim travel ban and repeatedly sought to get funding for a border wall to protect from the Central American caravans. How did America respond?

Pew asked whether immigrants “strengthen our country because of their hard work and talents” or “are a burden on our country because they take our jobs, housing and health care.” The proportion embracing immigration jumped from 53% in 2015 to 62% this year.

Trump sent troops to the border, warned of an America exposed without a wall and ran ads showing illegal immigrants who murdered innocent Americans, and yes, he made immigration the most important reason to vote against the Democrats in the off-year elections. His party lost the House in a 53%-45% landslide last year and has lost the battle of public opinion on immigration by much more than that.

[…] From the Tea Party revolt against Obama to Trump’s Tea Party-driven GOP, an ugly battle to stop immigration is forcing people to think through what they believe. A huge proportion of the country now embraces America as an immigrant country with a multicultural identity. That America won’t have much use for a Republican Party that is ferociously anti-immigrant.