Pew Hispanic: interest in immigration lags behind education, cost of living, jobs, healthcare, and crime
The Pew Hispanic Center has released their "2008 National Survey of Latinos: Hispanic Voter Attitudes". It finds that a great majority of those surveyed support Barack Obama over John McCain (66% vs. 23%). And, interest in immigration is lower than that in education, the cost of living, jobs, healthcare, and crime. The figures:
Extremely Important/Very Important/Total
The cost of living: 44/47/92
Note also that the question didn't ask for their specific stance on those issues, just asked whether they were important or not. So, some (probably small) percentage of the Important percentages for immigration might actually be from those who support our laws and some percentage might even be from those who want immigration restrictions. (According to Pew's 2007 survey, 56% of native-born Hispanics think there should be a check for immigration status before granting a driver's license; they don't appear to have asked about that this time.)
When it comes to the question of who would do the better job on immigration, BHO leads McCain by 59% vs. 19%.
John McCain probably doesn't want to see the results of which candidate is better for immigrants: BHO leads 50% to 12%. The outliers from that 12% are those making more than $75,000 per year (40% for BHO vs 27% for McCain) and Republicans (28% for BHO, 35% for McCain), with smaller increases for weekly churchgoers and college graduates.
The question of which party is better for Hispanics is even more bleak for the GOP. They get just 6%, versus 50% saying the Democrats would be better. The highest that goes is 12% for those making over $75,000 a year.
It's not possible to draw a clear conclusion from the non-specific data they've provided. Better questions might ask about specific immigration proposals, from something approaching open borders to restrictions. And, those questions might also ask about their knowledge of the candidates' plans. Do they understand that McCain's stance on immigration is nearly the same as Obama's, or have they bought the lies from MediaMatters et al?
However, it's clear that all McCain's pandering either hasn't worked or has been counteracted by lies from the Democrats trying to pretend that he wouldn't grant amnesty. He's probably going to assume it's the latter and double-down on his pandering. A wiser stance - the only one that's good public policy - would be to drop amnesty and support our laws. Lacking an external event - such as citizens doing their jobs and calling him on the flaws in his policies at his public events - don't expect him to choose the wiser plan.