TYLER, Texas (KETK) — The Texas-Mexico border has been a key issue in politics for years.

In a poll done by the University of Texas at Tyler in collaboration with the Dallas Morning News, when respondents were asked whether they approve or disapprove of how President Joe Biden is handling immigration at the Texas-Mexico border, 34% approved, while 55% disapproved. 11% of respondents felt neither way.

Recently the number of migrants entering the U.S. through Texas increased, Gov. Greg Abbott sent buses of migrants from Mexico to Washington D.C. to “take the border to Joe Biden.”

51% of registered Texas voters said that they approve of how Abbott is handling immigration at the border. 42% of respondents said that they disapprove of how Abbott is handling immigration at the border, while 8% neither approve nor disapprove.

Of those who responded:

  • 84% of those that approved were Republicans, and 24% were Democrats
  • 13% of respondents who disapproved were Republicans, and 69% were Democrats

In late June, 53 migrants died after a deadly smuggling incident when an 18-wheeler with a trailer carrying the people was found abandoned in San Antonio. This instance raised many questions as to how the truck passed border checkpoints and made it into Texas.

The people surveyed were asked whether they supported or opposed a series of efforts that Abbott is taking to lead an effort at the border. Of those efforts, 78% of respondents support inspecting all commercial vehicles at the border, while only 22% opposed or selected “don’t know.”

51% of those surveyed supported providing bus travel to Washington D.C. for migrants who have been processed by Customs and Border Protection, while 49% opposed or did not know.

In November 2021, Abbott confirmed that Texas would continue the construction of a wall on the Texas-Mexico Border started by the Trump administration. 50% of respondents said that they think a wall along the Texas-Mexico border is necessary for a safe border. 36% disagree that a wall is necessary for border safety, while 14% neither agree nor disagree.

In July 2021, a U.S. federal judge in Texas blocked applications for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that protected those who were brought into the United States as children from being deported.

Although DACA was blocked in Texas, 61% said they support granting permanent legal status to immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally when they were children. 27% opposed granting permanent legal status to this group of people, while 12% neither opposed nor supported it.

In an interview with KETK News, Abbott said that the problem at the Texas-Mexico border was “Joe Biden’s fault.” Abbott said that two years ago, Texas had the most secure border in decades but now has the highest number of border crossings in history.

Abbott will face Democratic opponent Beto O’Rourke in the Texas governor’s race in November.

The Dallas Morning News and UT Tyler sampled 1,384 registered voters and conducted the poll from Aug. 1 to Aug. 7.