The rise of immigration as a key political problem beyond national borders

Sun Mar 31 2024
Gil Ecker (238 articles)
The rise of immigration as a key political problem beyond national borders

Many New Yorkers perceive the increase in unlawful crossings at the southern border as follows: twelve men seeking refuge in large white tents situated on an abandoned section of a mental hospital campus, circulating about a local park and bus stop.

The Wall Street Journal recently interviewed people for its “Chasing the Base” podcast series, and their responses indicated that the presence of migrants in a city located around 2,000 miles from Mexico had made the border a major political issue, influencing voters from all sides of the aisle.

The problem’s recent ascent to prominence in the Big Apple and its suburbs is indicative of a broader pattern. Twenty percent of voters, up from thirteen percent in December, consider immigration to be the most pressing problem, surpassing even the economy, according to a Wall Street Journal survey published in March.

Ever before he began his first presidential campaign in 2015, former president Donald Trump has voiced his concerns about immigration. Both last year and this year, the issue was a major factor in his success and helped Trump secure the Republican nomination. Republicans under Trump’s leadership have cast Democrats, including President Biden, on defense over the unprecedented number of arrests at the southern border in the past two fiscal years, which has now emerged as a potentially powerful issue in the general election.

According to city officials, over sixty thousand refugees are finding refuge at various locations across New York City, with slightly more than a thousand staying in the tent city at the Creedmoor Psychiatric Center. Many migrants are being released by Border Patrol officials as they wait for their asylum claims to be adjudicated, which can take years. This has led voters to express concern about the continuous cost and implications to public safety.

Paul Gerner, a 74-year-old resident just outside of Creedmoor, claimed that he installed motion-activated lights at his home out of fear of burglaries. He has long been worried about immigration and has been a Republican for the most of his adult life. The Floral Park resident’s garage is where the retired fire marshal crafts his furniture.

Paul participated in the biggest Long Island St. Patrick’s Day Parade—the Wantagh Parade—on his motorbike. Rapidly expanding after WWII, this largely suburban area to the east of New York City has had partisan swings throughout the years. certain paradegoers make the journey into the city on a daily basis, and they discussed the newest arrivals in terms of security, the financial impact, and, in certain instances, their frustration with the border situation.

Working in healthcare, Debby Zedeck has seen firsthand how immigration impacts the healthcare system. She voted for Trump in 2016 but plans to write in a different candidate for 2020 because she is an independent. Although Zedeck claims she hasn’t made up her mind yet, she does believe the Republican position on immigration is stronger.

Republicans like Bruce Blakeman, the executive of Nassau County, have stated that the border is a major issue for voters, particularly those who immigrated decades ago. A Hofstra University professor and director of the National Center for Suburban Studies, Larry Levy hails from Long Island. He explained that the change is due to the influx of migrants into northern cities.

Concerns about crime, according to Levy, helped the GOP reclaim a few municipal offices in this area during the past three years. Republicans were able to gain support from minority groups that had previously voted for Democrats, including Latinos and Asian-Americans.

The Bral family left Iran for the United States in the 1980s when Pedram was a little boy. He practices obstetrics and is also the mayor of Great Neck, a town where he and other Iranian Jews live in close proximity.

Despite Bral’s claims that he was a lifelong Democrat, he declared his Republican affiliation around fifteen years ago. According to Bral, immigration is a contributing factor.

The many neighborhoods that surround the avenues that connect Queens to Nassau County are a reflection of the city itself. Near an Indian bridal shop and a takeout taco joint on Hillside Avenue is a halal meat market.

A former nurse practitioner named James Friedman claimed that Republicans were trying to politicize the matter. As an avid news consumer who has kept up with the immigration discussion, he has always been a Democrat and has always thought the Republican attacks on the border were baseless.

Accusing Trump of rejecting a compromise plan that would have provided funding for a border wall and additional agents, Friedman held Trump responsible while perusing the Maharaja Farmers Market. Quick case resolutions and deportations of non-qualifying migrants would have been facilitated by a new border asylum procedure.

In his recent special election triumph to succeed the disgraced Republican George Santos, Democratic Rep. Tom Suozzi made a similar argument. More needs to be done to safeguard the border, according to Suozzi, whose father was born in Italy. While running for office, Suozzi stated his support for the compromise plan and promised to push for a similar solution once he took office. By supporting bipartisan reforms, like the one he did, Democrats can withstand GOP attacks on immigration, he added. A minority of voters reached a consensus.

Democrats hoped they had discovered a method to deflect GOP assaults on immigration as they gathered to celebrate Suozzi’s triumph. In congressional districts located in and around New York City’s suburbs, that might be a deciding factor.

Watch the fifth and last episode of “Chasing the Base” on the What’s News feed for more New York insights. In this multi-part series, we’ll take a look beyond the numbers to see how voters in pivotal primary states are making up their minds. Here you can listen to previous episodes.

Gil Ecker

Gil Ecker

Gil Ecker is Charting & Technical Analyst. He has more than 10 years experience of Global Stock Markets.