"Comprehensive Immigration Reform" with "A Path to Citizenship"
Don’t call it Amnesty
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Amnesty is bad. Everyone agrees on that. Even the senators who support amnesty claim not to support it. Instead they support “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” with “A Path to Citizenship”. They support a comprehensive solution that will be compassionate and work as an immigration policy for the 21st century.No one uses the term “amnesty” anymore except opponents of amnesty for illegal aliens and their more vociferous advocates. This makes for some confusing speeches and press conferences.
The most bizarre argument that advocates of amnesty are making is that we have “de facto amnesty” now. The argument goes that since we have de facto amnesty now, we should just have the real thing and get it over with.A lack of proper enforcement is not de facto amnesty. Amnesty is legalization. What Rubio and Rand Paul call de facto amnesty is the difference between not arresting a drug dealer and legalizing heroin.
The big sales pitch for 2012 was overall electability. The sales pitch for 2016 is Latino electability. The GOP only wants someone who has a shot with the Latino vote. And Marco Rubio and Rand Paul are busy polishing their Latino vote credentials. It’s a stupid way to run a political movement, but a great way to get ahead.Even if amnesty is good for Rubio or Paul, it’s not good for the Republican Party, for America or for Latino immigrants for that matter, who are entitled to a legal system of entry, rather than being told that their best route into the country is by bribing a coyote and trying to make it across the border.And during an economic downturn, championing mass immigration is insensitive to the majority of American workers. The GOP failed to properly make its case to them in two elections. Now it’s giving them a big middle finger while chasing after the Mexican-American vote, even though far from all Mexican-Americans support amnesty.And worst of all they’re doing it dishonestly.
Take Rand Paul.
Rand Paul struggled valiantly to tell the media that haggling over terms like “path to citizenship” and “amnesty” gets the debate nowhere.
“[The debate] is trapped in a couple of words — ‘path to citizenship’ and ‘amnesty,’ ” he said. Taking a shot at the anti-immigration advocates, he said later in the call, “Everybody who doesn’t want anything to move forward calls anything they don’t like a ‘path to citizenship’ and ‘amnesty.‘“Sounding a tad forlorn, he then asked, “Can’t we just call it reform?”
Can’t we just call it what it is?
Reform tells you nothing about a policy
Reform tells you nothing about a policy. Obama called Obamacare reform too. Everyone calls their policy proposals reform. It’s a brand. It tells you nothing about what it does.
If you were reading conservatives sites this week, you saw the drama of Rand Paul going back and forth over whether he supports a path to citizenship or not.
As for citizenship, he went around and around with reporters, reiterating in response to each variation on the same question that for citizenship the new visa holders would “get in line” or “go to the back of the line.” He referred to the “existing” line but allowed that there had to be discussion about country limits, how many people are in line, how long they must wait, etc.He also indicated he was open to “rethinking” his opposition to granting citizenship to children brought here illegally if the border security issue can be resolved.
Lines. Lines lots of lines. But at the end of the line is citizenship.
“I didn’t use the word citizenship at all this morning,” Paul said. “Basically what I want to do is to expand the worker visa program, have border security and then as far as how people become citizens, there already is a process for how people become citizens. The main difference is I wouldn’t have people be forced to go home. You’d just get in line. But you get in the same line everyone is in.”
So Rand Paul’s proposal would legalize and eventually turn millions of illegal aliens into citizens… but he thinks it’s unfair that the end result be associated with him.
He’s not proposing to turn them into citizens. He’s just proposing to legalize them so that they can apply for citizenship.
The question for those who supported Rand Paul isn’t whether you want amnesty. Everyone is entitled to their point of view.
The question is should politicians be up front about the policies they support or should they hide them because they don’t trust the voters?
Even though Paul would clearly make it easier to become a citizen, he said he would rather not label it a “path to citizenship,” because using that phrases means everyone “closes their ears” to the rest of the argument.
Is this what you really want?
This doesn’t just apply to Rand, it applies to Rubio, who has been even worse on this out of the gate. The problem is that the Republican Party is overrun by presidential wannabes who don’t want to say what they mean and when they’re finally forced to take a position that is mainstream to their base, but edgy by their standards, they mess it up badly and blame the right-wing voters for the consequences.
Amnesty and Libertarians
During the debates over this topic, I wrote,
Libertarianism, like every other political philosophy, is not an absolute good. Thinking that way leads to totalitarianism. There are good things about it, but there are also self-destructive things about it. Proposing to turn 11 million voters who oppose libertarian ideas into citizens is an example of the latter.
Allah and Ace wrote something similar
Maybe the libertarians are right: Let’s simplify things by opening the borders instead. Offer to hand out voting ballots to anyone around the world who’s willing to pay U.S. taxes. (Imagine what fine libertarian electoral outcomes that would produce.)Indeed! A mass influx of immigrants from socialist countries with cradle-to-grave entitlements (and broken economies—gee I wonder if those two are related?) should finally gift us all with Rand Paul and Reason’s dream of a public ready for some libertarian economic solutions.
There’s a reason that Internationalism doesn’t work. It doesn’t work when liberals or libertarians champion mass migration and a borderless world because their specific philosophy can turn any group of immigrants around.
Philosophies can be applied to a specific nation. Attempting an international application is how we got the War in Iraq.
Just because a political philosophy works in the United States does not mean it will work in Mexico, El Salvador, Iraq or Afghanistan.
Refusing to understand that by championing international democracy or immigration is asking for big trouble.