We Asked Trump Rally Attendees What Issues Were Driving Them To Vote

We talked to people at a rally in Missouri where the president campaigned for a GOP candidate for Senate.
Posted at 3:34 PM, Nov 03, 2018

"This will be the election of Kavanaugh, the caravans, law and order, tax cuts and common sense guns."

Less than a week before election day, President Donald Trump held a rally in Columbia, Missouri. As supporters lined up to see him, we asked them: What are the biggest issues motivating you to vote on Tuesday? 

One answer was very common.

"Probably, immigration."

"Immigration, probably."

"It's immigration — illegal immigration. I don't have a problem with people who come to this country the right way, the legal way. I'm all for that. For people to be right now crashing our borders like they're anticipating? That's wrong. That's wrong."

"I've had family members that were foreigners and had to go through the process. And I know someone else that went through the process."

"And I'm legal, and I feel that everybody else that wants to come to this wonderful country should do it the legal way, and somebody storming our southern border, that's not right. That is not right."

"Well, you can't have open borders. You know what I mean, like a lot of them want. Got to be able to vet people and check them out, you know, if we let them in, since there's so much terrorism and stuff."

These answers aren't surprising when you consider how key immigration has been to the Trump administration's agenda. 

In the weeks leading up the midterms, the president has proposed increasing military units on the southern border and questioned the policy of birthright citizenship.

According to a Gallup poll released this summer, more Americans than ever say immigration is the top problem facing the U.S. 

Almost as much as immigration, many people we spoke to at the rally said they were motivated by something you wouldn't actually find on the ballot: President Trump himself.

"I believe our president is doing a very good job, and we want to support him." 

"I would hate to see them try to impeach him. ...[Democrats] hate him that bad, you know what I mean?" 

"We gotta take it back. Take it back, and keep it there. Make America great and keep it great."

Very few people we talked to actually mentioned the person the president was campaigning for: Senate candidate Josh Hawley. Because of President Trump's sheer presence in local races, the Columbia Journalism Review notes that "midterm voters may be be thinking more nationally than in years past."