You know that Larry David gif when he made the "I can't make sense out of it" gesture?
This is the thing. The claim in linked article is unquoted. Yet on FoxNews you can, again without a quotation marks, read
Wolf said the wall was top of border officials’ priority list and cited stats suggesting that the wall acted as a deterrent for illegal immigration, drug smuggling and human trafficking. He said that since border wall construction began in Tucson, Arizona, illegal crossings are down 24 percent. In San Diego, crossings are down 27 percent, and in Yuma crossings are down by over 78 percent.
Both bolding by me. So we have a statement that it was Chad Wolf who said those number backed up with stats. So there should be some data to look at and conclude those numbers
And there are - U.S. Border Patrol Southwest Border Apprehensions by Sector Fiscal Year 2020. There the apprehensions that are noted. With divide by age and family status.
Now for Yuma we see that Alien Children (0-17 yr old) Apprehensions dropped by 79%. Family units by 88% and single adults by 50% . (To compare, in Del Rio it was up 50% children and families. And in Tucson up by 120% for families). Those are all "compared to previous year"
So it's not the immigration that is down. It's the amount of people who are caught that is down.
Second thing is that, as you can see, there is no "78%". With such exact numbers it would be easy to calculate overall apprehensions OR rounded up for better impact "almost 80%".
So from where the 78% comes from? We know that the quote state since border wall construction began. In Yuma there as already a vehicle barriers, and on October 10 2019 the work started to replace it with 30-foot bollards. We need to assume that this is what means "wall construction".
Based on method of comparision we would need to measure the apprehensions from 10.10.2019 till 01.14.2020 with similar date of october 2018 to January 2019 (to December as January data for 2020 is not yet avaiable).
And the data show that the apprehensions were down by around 30%.
So 78%. Where it is? It's in the article by AzCentral.com
More than three quarters of the apprehensions (78 percent) this year are unaccompanied minors and family units, the term the Border Patrol uses to refer to adults traveling with one or more family members.
The only problem is that the article if from May 2018.
So, NO illegal immigration is not down. It's the apprehention rate that is down. And only compared to previous year. For example for December 2017 and 2019 the rate was almost the same, 40 thousand.