WASHINGTON, D.C. — Americans say the government, immigration, and the economy in general are the most important problems currently facing the country. Mentions of government and the economy have been at the top of the list since the beginning of the year, while mentions of immigration rose sharply in July, in response to the crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, and remain high this month.
To address the immigration issue, President Barack Obama requested an emergency appropriation of $3.7 billion, which Republicans in Congress rejected. The Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives passed two immigration bills before members left for their August recess, but the bills have little chance of passing the Democratic-controlled Senate or being signed into law by the president. The government’s failure to act on immigration before the recess likely angered Americans who say immigration is the most important issue, and may be one reason mentions of immigration are elevated for a second month.
In the Aug. 7-10 poll, mentions of immigration, the economy, and jobs as the most important problem each dipped slightly.
More Americans said foreign policy was the most important problem facing the U.S. in August than said this in July, possibly in response to new U.S. military involvement in Iraq, as well as the ongoing fighting between the Israelis and Palestinians and the Russia-Ukraine situation. While the percentage of Americans citing “war” also ticked up slightly, mentions of foreign policy increased by four percentage points between July and August, the largest change seen this month. The increase in international involvement and talks of possible involvement may have led to this rise in mentions of foreign policy as the most important problem.
Seventy-One Percent of Americans Say Non-Economic Issues Most Important
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