March 10, 2008
The not-so-hot button

This isn't really news, in the sense that it's happened over and over again in elections across the country, but in case you've forgotten, it's still the case that being an anti-immigrant demagogue isn't an electoral winner.

The cooling down of immigration as a hot election-year issue is backed up by recent polls.

Roughly one in 10 Harris County voters identified immigration as the most important issue in determining his or her vote in the general election, according to a recent poll commissioned by the Houston Chronicle. The poll, conducted by Zogby International, found immigration was far more important among GOP voters, with 20 percent of Republicans ranking it as their top issue -- compared with 3 percent of Democrats.

Seems to me you could simply have pointed to the result in the GOP primary for Harris County Judge, where the guy who made getting tuff on immigration a centerpiece of his campaign lost. If it didn't help get Charles Bacarisse elected, I don't see why anyone else would think it's going to help them get elected. Which is not to say I don't expect some of them to keep trying.

In the Chronicle poll, 35 percent of those surveyed name the economy as their most important issue. Fifteen percent named the war in Iraq, and 11 percent said health care.

In the dead-tree version of this story, there was a sidebar that showed significant support for a path to legalization among young voters, and decreasing levels of such support as the voters got older, to the point where the oldest voters opposed it more than they supported it. Which makes it much like the support curve for gay rights, and gives me hope that this is an issue that will permanently fade away over time. I hope so, anyway.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on March 10, 2008 to Election 2008