Last month, just 5 percent of the public named immigration the most important problem facing the country today. That number more than tripled to 17 percent this month, according to a new Gallup poll, topping all other issues.

The concern over immigration comes as the issue is back in the national spotlight amid a crisis as the Southwest border, where tens of thousands of unaccompanied Central American children have been apprehended in recent months.

Immigration has jumped to the top of the list of the public's concerns, just ahead of dissatisfaction with the government (16 percent), the economy (15 percent) and unemployment and jobs (14 percent).

Republicans mention immigration as a concern more than twice as often as Democrats. That, as Gallup notes, could signal that worries about immigration could have more to do with illegal immigration than with immigration reform.

The poll was conducted Jul 7-10.