Trump Takes Charge On Immigration

President Trump is taking charge on immigration with less than a week to go before the midterm elections, after nearly two years in office that showed many conservatives that Congress is incapable of handling the issue.

Trump seized on the approach of a caravan of several thousand people headed toward the southern U.S. border by promising they wouldn't enter the U.S., deploying thousands of troops to back up that pledge and vowing to unilaterally make it harder for people to seek asylum.

Republicans see a clear message: Trump will do things on his own when Congress fails.

“He’s doing everything in his power to curtail illegal immigration despite the obstacles in Congress and the laws on the books,” said Ford O’Connell, a Republican strategist. “Overall, this caravan, etc., is a winning issue for Trump, and the reason why you know this was until we got birthright citizenship, the Democrats were ducking and not talking about this.”

“Outside of [Justice Brett] Kavanaugh, there is no single issue that fires up Republicans more than the issue of illegal immigration,” O’Connell said. “We see it in poll after poll. It correlates not only to firing them up, but also into turnout.”

O’Connell said the president’s recent actions also touch on issues beyond immigration, such as national security as it relates to sending troops to the U.S.-Mexico border. “All of these moves hit various issues that are of high priority to base Republicans,” he said.

Read more from Melissa Quinn at the Washington Examiner

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Analysis & Political Strategy