Friday, June 08, 2007

What Have We Learned?

... or
Not Happy, but not Betrayed

So the immigration bill has been pulled. For now. But its effects will continue for a long time, perhaps long enough to give the Democrats control of both the Congress and the White House. But we know things now that we should have known all along.

We have known for a long time that liberal groups have seen immigration reform as a way to gain voting rights for illegal aliens. Yes, yes, I know, they care. Self-interest informs altruism.

But the Republicans decided that they too wanted to court the illegal vote. Republicans who played the race card and questioned the sincerity of their opponents on the immigration issue have some serious problems. I don't feel betrayed, just ... displeased. Insulted. But at least I know.

President Bush gave a speech.

As a matter of fact, you can tell when the border is better defended because the number of arrests go down. In other words, when people know there's a consequence to trying to sneak across, there's less likely to be people sneaking across. Arrests have gone down by 27 percent over the past year on the southern border. That's a sign of progress. It should say to the American people that we're doing what the people expect us to do.
Actually, Mr. President, a precipitous drop like that could mean the agents are being kept from enforcing the law. The arrest rate by itself says very little about the overall volume.
This reform is complex. There's a lot of emotions around this issue. Convictions run deep. Those determined to find fault with this bill will always be able to look at a narrow slice of it and find something they don't like. If you want to kill the bill, if you don't want to do what's right for America, you can pick one little aspect out of it, you can use it to frighten people. Or you can show leadership and solve this problem once and for all, so the people who wear the uniform in this crowd can do the job we expect them to do.
Questioning my patriotism?

Senator Lindsay Graham:
As Diggers Realm says,

Senator Graham even went as far as to say he was a part of La Raza by saying "We're going to tell the bigots to shut up".

In other words he is in bed with this racist illegal alien support group La Raza that has funded extremist Aztlan reconquista groups like MEChA. He's looking out for them, not you. He's looking out for them over American citizens and he needs to be brought to task for that.

Senator John McCain:

Amanda Carpenter at Townhall says,
Not one to shy from a fight, the former P.O.W. McCain suggested that they visit the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. There, “you’ll find a whole lot of Hispanic names,” he said.

He went on: “When you go to Iraq or Afghanistan today, you’re going to see a whole lot of people who are of Hispanic background. You’re even going to meet some of the few thousand that are still green card holders who are not even citizens of this country, who love this country so much that they’re willing to risk their lives in its service in order to accelerate their path to citizenship and enjoy the bountiful, blessed nation.”
I have never suspected that Senator McCain was a racist. Perhaps he didn't mean to suggest that we must treat everyone of a particular skin color or ethnic background in a certain way because of their skin or last name?

It doesn't matter what kind of names are on the Vietnam Memorial. That is a Red Herring. And it also doesn't matter that some who are not citizens are fighting overseas: they are not the targets of this immigration bill. If the Senate is concerned with that group of people, they should introduce a bill granting citizenship to anyone who serves honorably in our military, or they should simply not allow such service.

The whole comprehensive immigration bill effort was just disappointing beyond belief. Maybe, and I have to roll my eyes as I write this, the politicians have learned that we want a secure border. We think that's their whole job. Or at least, without a secure border, nothing else matters.

And it may have irreparably ruptured the Republican coalition, by splitting the idealists from the capitalists.

The big winner? Rudy. With his social liberal credentials, he won't need the coalition.

But at least this is one time that the phony charges of bigotry and racism didn't carry the day. Maybe we've finally gotten past automatically caving in when those charges are aimed at us.

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