Boyles claimed illegal immigration is "the single domestic policy issue in this country right now"; polls say otherwise

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Host Peter Boyles of 630 KHOW-AM asserted on his November 15 show that Democratic presidential candidate U.S. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) has "clearly taken an enormous hit, and it is on illegal immigration." Boyles further claimed that illegal immigration "is the single domestic policy issue in this country right now." In fact, according to several recent national polls, immigration ranks below the economy, health care, the war in Iraq, terrorism, and national security as a priority issue for Americans.

After asserting on his November 15 show that U.S. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's (D-NY) presidential campaign has "clearly taken an enormous hit, and it is on illegal immigration," Peter Boyles of 630 KHOW-AM stated, "And so for all of these on-airs and others who say, 'Illegal immigration's not an issue; it's the war, and it's this' -- it is the single domestic policy issue in this country right now, is illegal immigration." In fact, several recent national polls show that Americans consider the economy, the war in Iraq, health care, terrorism, and national security higher-priority issues than immigration.

Boyles was responding to a caller who stated that in Iowa, Clinton's "at 25 percent," compared with "around 23" percent for U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) and "about 22" percent for John Edwards, and that "if you look at it that way, a majority of the people don't want her." Boyles claimed that Clinton has lost popularity due to her position on illegal immigration:

BOYLES: Yeah, I don't know. Like I say, it's now a little more than a, little less than a year to the election. That's a lifetime. But she's clearly taken an enormous hit, and it is on illegal immigration. And so for all of these on-airs and others who say, "Illegal immigration's not an issue; it's the war, and it's this" -- it is the single domestic policy issue in this country right now, is illegal immigration. And it destroys education, criminal justice, welfare -- you go down a list of public services -- medical care. It's all being destroyed by illegals.

However, several recent polls show that Americans consider the economy, the war in Iraq, health care, terrorism, and national security to be higher-priority issues than immigration:

  • According to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll of adults nationwide conducted November 1-5 by the polling organizations of Peter Hart and Bill McInturff, when asked which issue "should be the top priority for the federal government," 26 percent said "The war in Iraq," 16 percent said "Health care," 14 percent said "Job creation and economic growth," 13 percent said "Terrorism." Eleven percent of those polled answered "Illegal immigration." The poll's margin of error was 2.5 percentage points.
  • Similarly, a Newsweek poll conducted October 31-November 1 by "Princeton Survey Research Associates International" asked registered voters, "In deciding which presidential candidate to support in 2008, which one of the following issues is most important to you?" Only 7 percent of respondents said "Immigration." According to the poll, 22 percent of voters identified "The economy and jobs" as the issue most important to them, while 19 percent said "Iraq," 17 percent said "Health care," 15 percent said "Terrorism and national security," and 10 percent said "Taxes and government spending." The poll's margin of error was 4 percentage points.
  • Finally, a Gallup poll conducted October 25-28 asked Americans "to name, in their own words, what 'one or two issues should be the top priorities for the president and Congress to deal with at this time.' " More respondents cited the war in Iraq (62 percent), health care (29 percent), and the economy (18 percent) than immigration (11 percent) among the federal government's top one or two priorities. The margin of error was 4 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence.

From the November 15 broadcast of 630 KHOW-AM's The Peter Boyles Show:

CALLER: I had a comment about Mrs. Clinton too. If you look at the Iowa numbers, she's at 25 percent --

BOYLES: Yeah.

CALLER: -- Obama's at, like, around 23, and Edwards --

BOYLES: Yep.

CALLER: -- is about 22. So, if you look at it that way, a majority of the people don't want her, they want the other two. That's one thing that's not being brought out. So if she does win Iowa it's by a minority of the choice of the people in that state. Like I said, if it was one person combined, like Edwards' and Obama's vote, she'd be way behind.

BOYLES: Yeah, I don't know. Like I say, it's now a little more than a, little less than a year to the election. That's a lifetime. But she's clearly taken an enormous hit, and it is on illegal immigration. And so for all of these on-airs and others who say, "Illegal immigration's not an issue; it's the war, and it's this" -- it is the single domestic policy issue in this country right now, is illegal immigration. And it destroys education, criminal justice, welfare -- you go down a list of public services -- medical care. It's all being destroyed by illegals.

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