PoliticsMidterm Elections


Trump Hammers On Immigration, Economy For Midterms Pitch

President Trump is pointing to his promises on immigration and the economy in order to convince voters to keep the GOP in power.
Posted at 5:31 PM, Nov 02, 2018

President Trump has spent the last few weeks before the midterm elections hitting the stump to argue for why Americans should vote to keep the GOP in power. And his focus has been on 2 issues he hopes have the best chance of getting his supporters to the polls: immigration, and the economy.

During a rally, Trump told his supporters, "Republicans want strong borders, no crime, no chaos and no caravans."

Trump has been ratcheting up his anti-immigration rhetoric, particularly around a caravan of Central American migrants currently heading through Mexico. The group's expected to reach the U.S. border in several weeks time.

The president is promising to send thousands of U.S. soldiers to the border in response. He's also pledged to sign an executive order ending birthright citizenship in order to make immigration to the U.S. less attractive.

Those promises might fire up his core supporters, but they're unlikely to go much further than that. Almost every expert agrees that Trump can't unilaterally revoke birthright citizenship, and while Trump can order the military to the border, the troops aren't authorized to do much more than fill support roles.

Trump said at a campaign rally, "If Democrats take over Congress, the stock market will plummet."

The president is also running on his economic record: job and unemployment numbers have been consistently strong since Trump took office. Trump has forecast dire financial consequences if Democrats take one or more chambers of Congress after the midterms.

The stock market is going through a rough patch right now, but that likely has more to do with trade turmoil and fears of a Fed rate hike than it does with the outcome of the midterms.

To follow up on last year's passage of a massive tax overhaul, Trump has promised an additional middle class tax cut is in the works. But Congress isn't likely to get to that until next year at the earliest — and a Democratic victory in the midterms could jeopardize that plan. 

Many Democrats have been focusing their midterm campaigns on the GOP's attempts to roll back healthcare coverage. Trump has tried to defuse that attack by promising his party will protect important priorities like coverage for people with pre-existing conditions. So far, he hasn't gone into detail on how the GOP will do that.

Voters from both parties are highly energized about the midterms. Pew Research Center reports 67 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of Republicans say they're more enthusiastic than normal about the election.