09/27/2011 11:33 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Immigration Debate Alive And Well In Presidential Campaign

If people thought immigration would not be a major issue once non-stop political campaigning begins, the events of the last few days have shown otherwise.

All the controversy surrounding immigration reform, from a call to a new amnesty for undocumented immigrants to an outright support for immediate deportation of millions of undocumented immigrants are as loaded with emotions as they were over the last few years.

This was a lesson that the latest star GOP candidate, Texas Governor Rick Perry, had to learn the hard way, after he was attacked for implementing the Texas version of the DREAM Act during the GOP's recent presidential debate .

Perry was criticized on that issue by former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, who during the 2007-2008 campaign described in detail how under his presidency he was going to deport undocumented immigrants in 90 days.

Michelle Bachmann also went after Perry in her campaign appearances during the week, causing a dent in support for the front runner.

If the first signs that Perry's star is beginning to dim for the conservative wings of the GOP multiply and bring to his demise as a viable presidential candidate, it can be said that the decline took form with an immigration question.

Perry, still considered a strong possibility, kept arguing that those who don't share his views on the state's DREAM Act "don't have a heart."

A Latino that is not running but has appeared in the campaign is Florida's junior Senator Marco Rubio, who was the favorite vice presidential candidate, to take the number 2 spot on any presidential ticket as candidate for Vice President in a straw poll in Massachusetts.

Florida U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, a Cuban American, was the choice for the vice presidential nominee with 23 percent of the vote.

Rubio, by the way, supported Perry's action to assist undocumented students.

As the immigration debate again returned to many front pages, the latest numbers on illegal crossings of the U.S.-Mexico border have fallen 50% since 2008 and 80% since 2000, according to a Washington Post editorial, which should prompt the GOP to declare victory.

Captures of immigrants illegally crossing will fall to about 325,000 for fiscal 2011, says the Post.

At the same time, the Obama administration has broken the record in the annual number of deportations of undocumented immigrants, surpassing more than $1 million since taking office. As published in MSNBC, Obama is "on pace to deport more in one term than George W. Bush did in two."

That trend generated protests by Latino community leaders across the country and a dip in the support by Hispanic voters for the re-election of Obama, according to some polls, as immigration, according to latest polls, continues to be the most important topic for Latinos in this campaign.