Immigration Polls: The Big Shell Game Continues
Consider its shameless misuse of public opinion
And yet, the
Audacious Epigone pointed out in an email that in my
VDARE.com assault on rigged questions about
immigration, I had flat-out missed the worst survey
research sin committed by the contrivers of the
April 13th LA Times poll that I was using as
my example. I overlooked the LAT`s biggest feat
of sleight-of-hand because I concentrated too much on
the biased wording of the individual proposals, rather
than on the bigger picture.
offered respondents the following "three proposals"
and asked whether they supported or opposed each. See if
you can spot how they contrived the grouping of the
questions to lower artificially the amount of
immigration restrictionist support.
- Create a guest-worker program that would give
a temporary visa to noncitizens who want to legally work in the U.S."
undocumented immigrants who have been
working in the U.S. for a number of years, with no
criminal record, to start a path to citizenship."
off hundreds of miles of the
border between the U.S. and Mexico and make it a
felony to enter illegally."
there really just three proposals here?
A. Guest-worker program
C. Fence and Felony
pro-immigration proposals were made independent of each
other, while the two anti-immigration proposals were
linked together with the
logical operator "and." The word "and"
is the opposite of "or"—you`re only supposed to
answer "Support" for "C" if you favor
both the fence and the felony.
Thus, if you
guest-worker program but not the
amnesty, or vice-versa, you`d still be counted by
the LAT as supporting one of the first two
proposals for increased immigration. But if you
supported the fence but not the felony, or vice-versa,
you`d be logically forced to answer "oppose" to
the combined proposal.
You won`t be surprised
to learn that the
Mainstream Media is still at it when it comes to
immigration polls. But now they have a new trick:
announcing that the public supports the Senate over the
House based on poll questions that are not
actually about the bill the Senate just passed.
For example, in
Immigration Reform May Die in the House"
in Time on May
30, Perry Brown Jr. opined:
"But in fact, polls
suggest large majorities of Americans support something
akin to what
President Bush and the
Senate have pushed, a so-called "comprehensive
reform" law that would create a guest worker program and
provide some path to citizenship for the 11 million
illegal immigrants already in the country."
"Something akin"…that`s one way to put it.
The poll questions aren`t more than "something
akin" to the Hagel-Martinez Comprehensive
Immigration Reform Act, which passed the Senate two
weeks ago on the back of overwhelming Democratic
support, because the Mainstream Media has relentlessly
refused to explain fully
what is in the bill—above all, its huge increase
in legal immigration.
VDARE.com readers know all about it, but the first
inkling many people got of what the Senate bill would
actually do came in the distinguished economics pundit
Robert Samuelson`s May 31 column in the
Washington Post and Newsweek:
"You might think that the
first question anyone would ask is how much it would
actually increase or decrease legal immigration. But no.
After the Senate approved the bill by 62 to 36, you
could not find the answer in the news columns of The
Post, the New York Times or the Wall
"Yet the estimates do
exist and are fairly startling. By rough projections,
the Senate bill would double the legal immigration that
would occur during the next two decades from about 20
million (under present law) to about 40 million [and
that`s the White House`s lowball estimate]. One job of
journalism is to inform the public about what our
political leaders are doing. In this case, we failed."
You Don`t Know About the Immigration Bill by
Robert J. Samuelson, May 31, 2006]
The Time article careened onward:
"A recent poll from Fox
News showed about 63% of Americans supported the Senate
approach, a CBS poll puts that number at around 77%,
depending on the wording of the question."
This claim is apparently based on
this Fox question:
"Allowing illegal immigrants who have jobs in the United
States to apply for legal, temporary-worker status?"
"Allow foreign workers to
work in U.S. temporarily and then return home."
"The “Temporary Guest Worker” concept as the bill
designs it is an utter fraud."
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) pointed out that it would
be extraordinarily easy for "temporary" workers
to get permanent legal residency. For his insensitivity
in actually reading the 614-page bill that he was being
asked to vote on, Sessions was smeared ad hominem
by the Washington Post`s top political reporter
Dana Milbank in a
diatribe that has to
be read to be believed.
When Senators John Cornyn (R-Tex.) and Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.)
tried to insert an amendment into the Hagel-Martinez
bill saying that "temporary" workers had to be
White House intervened to shoot it down, saying, in
effect, that when President Bush had used the word
"temporary" six times
in his May 15 speech,
he was lying.
Furthermore, Time forgot to mention that a
House-like proposal in the
Fox poll was favored 55-31, not terribly different
from the 63-29 margin for the "temporary"
workers. Respondents were asked:
and Independents all favored this by substantial
New York Times poll showed 66% of Americans opposed
a 700-mile fence along the U.S.-Mexico border, one of
the key provisions in the House bill."
Of course, many American citizens oppose building a
700-mile long fence—because they favor building a
2000-mile-long fence along the entire border that
would actually get the job done, unlike the
House`s 700-mile or the Senate`s 350-mile partial
fences. But, don`t expect the MSM media to mention this.
Why does the MSM feel entitled to yank your chain
when it comes to immigration?
Samuelson concluded his column by making a point I`ve
been stressing for years:
"Whether or not the bias
groupthink is a powerful force in journalism.
considered noble. People who
critically examine its value or worry about its
social effects are subtly considered small-minded,
stupid, or bigoted."
The fact that they support massive immigration means
more moral than you. So they don`t have to obey the
basic rules of morality. They can
twist the truth with a clear conscience.
Why? Because they are better than you.
In their minds, it`s that simple.
[Steve Sailer [email
him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and