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Hullabaloo


Friday, January 31, 2014

 
When you organize yourself around bigotry ...

by digby

I wish I felt more confident about an immigration bill, but as long as the Republicans are in the grip- of the hard right I just find it very difficult to believe it can happen. It's just not something that base can live with.

Ed Kilgore spells out the reasons better than anyone:
In all the analysis of the GOP’s immigration stance, it’s pretty much been taken for granted that the “self-deportation” stance of Mitt Romney—perhaps his most popular policy stance for movement conservatives, and an important key to his nomination—has to be discarded. But all this insistence on ruling out any “special path” to citizenship, however limited and remote, and on “hard triggers” for legalization that are designed to be unreachable, thinly disguises a fundamental unwillingness to accept the presence of unauthorized immigrants and the hope they will all find life here miserable enough to eventually go home. Illegal border crossings have already slackened significantly. The number of deportations remain very high. So all the talk of “enforcement first” increasingly sounds like an excuse for avoiding or at least delaying legalization in any form.

Conservatives have plenty of grounds for believing the Republican Establishment is being dishonest about its intentions on immigration policy, and is trying to “trick the base,” as I put it yesterday. But for the most part, they are being dishonest, too. They know they can’t just advocate rounding up 11 million people and sending them in boxcars across the border. And “self-deportation” sounds (and is) cruel. But by finding grievous fault with any workable—much less politically feasible—approach for dealing with the undocumented, they are actually fighting to ensure nothing replaces deportations and self-deportations as the de facto policy, particularly in a future Republican administration that owes nothing to Hispanic or Asian voters.
They don't want them here. It's really not any more complicated than that. They know it's a problem politically and so are trying to find other reasons to explain their position. But in the end, they want undocumented workers to "go home" even if they've been here for years, have American kids and have been contributing to our economy and society. And I think we can all figure out why that might be. That's the bind in which the GOP finds itself. It's organized itself around a certain sub-group that simply does not like foreigners and racial minorities. It's a problem for them. But it's a problem for the rest of us too.

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