Is anyone moved by the fake concern of the most partisan Democrats, like Senators Reid, Schumer, Menendez and Durbin, and liberal editorial writers and commentators, that unless Republicans fall in line and support the Senate’s immigration expansion and amnesty bill, the Republican party may end up as a permanent minority party?
There’s nothing those liberals would like more than for Republicans to remain the party out of power forever. They hope that enactment of their immigration expansion and amnesty bill will lead to this result, if only they can deceive enough foolish or stupid Republicans to inflict that result on themselves. Democrats hope that enactment of their immigration bill will win them the loyalty of Hispanics and other ethnic groups, insuring their permanent control of the U.S. government.
I think they’re forgetting that the only people who vote in elections are U.S. citizens. And Hispanic citizens, like all U.S. citizens, are divided on immigration and all other hot button political issues. No one feels the impact of increased new immigration as much as earlier legal immigrants competing for jobs and promotions. And for the true believers in immigration amnesty and open borders, no credit for enactment of immigration amnesty will be given to Republicans who vote for it out of fear and self-interested opportunism.
Republicans do have a serious political problem. The Republican base requires political positions increasingly at odds with younger voters, who support equal rights for gay Americans, reproductive rights for women, and higher taxes on the rich. Young voters provided the margin of victory for President Obama in both 2008 and 2012, and they blame Republicans for policies that caused the economic recession in which they live.
Young voters have suffered through the worst and most prolonged jobs crisis since the Great Depression, and no growth in real wages for more than a decade. It’s become a cliché now that young Americans will not live as well as their parents. Republicans have an opportunity to present their opposition to the Senate immigration bill as an effort to preserve both American jobs for Americans, and also what is already the most generous legal immigration system in the world.
Besides rewarding 11 million illegal immigrants with entry into the legal U.S. labor market, the Senate immigration bill would triple immigration over the next decade from about 10 million to over 30 million, on the incredible claim that the U.S. is experiencing a labor shortage in all job categories from the most skilled to the least.
Republicans should go on the offensive against the big immigration bill to make clear that jobs for Americans is their first priority, and to demonstrate that they are not in fact the pawns of big business and the corporate lobbyists supporting the bill to drive down wages. A populist message supporting jobs and higher wages for Americans, with only incremental changes to the immigration limits, should resonate among American wage-earners of all ages and ethnicities concerned about their future.
A clear, principled stand against immigration expansion and amnesty, and in defense of American jobs and wages, should throw the Democrats off balance and on the defensive. Good immigration policy should also be good politics.