Americans Want a Border Crackdown as Soon as They Hear the Facts

U.S. voters tend to greatly underestimate how many migrants are illegally entering the country and to support stricter border enforcement when they find out, according to a new Harvard/Harris poll.

SO WHAT

Liberals often accuse the right of fearmongering about the southern border, but it appears the public actually doesn’t know how bad the crisis there is.

THE DETAILS

Seventy-five percent of registered voters estimate that 1 million or fewer illegal border crossings were recorded in fiscal year 2022, per the Harvard/Harris poll, conducted Dec. 14-15.

  • Nearly nine in 10 voters think the number is less than 2 million.
  • In reality, there were more than 2.75 million illegal border crossings, according to Customs and Border Protection data.
  • After being provided the correct stat, over two-thirds of voters want the Biden administration to “issue new, stricter policies to reduce the flow of people across the border.”

THE KICKER

“The Republican Party’s effort to use the exaggerated ‘border crisis’ — naturally with the propagandistic assistance of Fox News and other stars in the right-wing media constellation — as a major vote-getter has failed,” James North wrote for The New Republic following last month’s midterm elections, voicing a common sentiment on the left.

  • “Such efforts are, by now, a rote occurrence in the late stages of election season; this is where fearmongering over migrant ‘caravans’ has become a traditional sight.”

THE DETAILS

Seventy-five percent of registered voters estimate that 1 million or fewer illegal border crossings were recorded in fiscal year 2022, per the Harvard/Harris poll, conducted Dec. 14-15.

  • Nearly nine in 10 voters think the number is less than 2 million.
  • In reality, there were more than 2.75 million illegal border crossings, according to Customs and Border Protection data.
  • After being provided the correct stat, over two-thirds of voters want the Biden administration to “issue new, stricter policies to reduce the flow of people across the border.”

THE KICKER

“The Republican Party’s effort to use the exaggerated ‘border crisis’ — naturally with the propagandistic assistance of Fox News and other stars in the right-wing media constellation — as a major vote-getter has failed,” James North wrote for The New Republic following last month’s midterm elections, voicing a common sentiment on the left.

  • “Such efforts are, by now, a rote occurrence in the late stages of election season; this is where fearmongering over migrant ‘caravans’ has become a traditional sight.”
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