In recent weeks, Bloomberg Businessweek reports, President Obama and congressional Republicans have begun to offer the same simple-sounding solution for dealing with the flood of children crossing the U.S. border alone: Send the kids home. But with tens of thousands of them churning through the system, some just toddlers, the logistics are overwhelming. Since October, more than 57,000 children have arrived by themselves, most from Central America (as we show below), and 22,000 more have been detained with their parents (mostly children under 12). The American people appears considerably more concerned than the politicians - a Reuters/Ipsos poll shows 70% of Americans - including 86% of Republicans - believe undocumented immigrants threaten traditional U.S. beliefs and customs.
As Bloomberg Businessweek notes,
As of June 30, fewer than 500 of the 57,000 have been sent home, and more children continue to arrive every day, despite pleas from the Obama administration to Central Americans not to come.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents find that most don’t try to run; in fact, they want to be caught. The kids hope that being apprehended will begin another journey, one that will end with permission to remain in the U.S.
“It’s just been politically untenable to even improve services for these kids we were seeing, let alone prepare for emergency situations,”
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And the American people is starting to worry... as Reuters reports,
As President Barack Obama considers sidestepping Congress to loosen U.S. immigration policy, a Reuters/Ipsos poll shows Americans are deeply worried that illegal immigration is threatening the nation's culture and economy.
Seventy percent of Americans - including 86 percent of Republicans - believe undocumented immigrants threaten traditional U.S. beliefs and customs, according to the poll.
The findings suggest immigration could join Obamacare - the healthcare insurance overhaul - and the economy as hot button issues that encourage more Republicans to vote in November's congressional election.
Only 17 percent thought more legal immigrants should be allowed to come to the United States. Thirty-eight percent said the number should stay the same.
"If Obama starts using executive orders to grant citizenship or to stop deportations I think he gives Republicans a big opening," said Jennifer Duffy, of the Cook Political Report analyst group. "It'll be about the issue at hand, immigration, but it also feeds into this Republican narrative of overreach, of sort of abusing his power."
As one poll respondent (who has voted Dem and Rep in the last few years) noted... there was no need for either Obama or Congress to take new measures. "It doesn't matter. Enforce the laws that we have here now," he said.