Are Republicans in Congress about to do the
Wrong Thing for the Wrong Reason?
As the Republican Senators and Members of Congress move toward a vote on immigration reform (aka amnesty), they would do well to consider if they are doing “the wrong thing for the wrong reason”
Since the debacle that was the 2012 presidential election for the Republican Party, many party leaders and pundits including Marco Rubio, Karl Rove, Sean Hannity, Bill O’Rielly and even party chairman Reince Priebus have embraced and evangelized the myth that the Republicans must support so called immigration reform – read Amnesty – to win future elections. As pointed out in two recently published articles- nothing could be further from the truth.
In the first article published in the Washington Times, syndicated columnist Jeff Kuhner handily disproves the myth that support of amnesty will win over large numbers of Hispanic voters to the GOP.
Kuhner points out that among Hispanic voters “…amnesty is not a magic bullet; rather, it could ricochet and slay the GOP elephant. Exit polls have consistently shown most Hispanic voters do not rank immigration reform as a high priority. It is not even a top-five issue. If it was, then President Reagan’s amnesty should have brought millions of Hispanics into the Republican big tent. It didn’t. In fact, for the past 25 years, the trend has been in the opposite direction. Hispanics in increasing numbers are backing Democrats. The reason is simple: They want big-government liberalism.”
Continuing, he states that “…The 2012 exit polls clearly revealed Hispanics voted Democrat owing to Obamacare. This was (and remains) their No. 1 issue. An overwhelming majority of Hispanics embrace government-run health care because they support a lavish entitlement state, subsidized housing, free education, Pell Grants, long-term unemployment benefits, welfare, food stamps, Medicaid, Social Security and disability insurance. In other words, most Hispanics are natural Democrats. They prefer statism and higher taxes to small-government conservatism. They are not “values” voters. They vote their pocketbook.”
Kuhner concludes “Amnesty is a poisoned chalice; Republicans drink it at their peril. By allowing a path to citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants, theGOP is paving the way for permanent Democratic rule.”
In a separate article in the Washington Examiner, syndicated columnist Byron York asks a very relevant question. “…how many Hispanic voters do Republicans need to attract before the party can again win the White House?”
York uses an interactive tool (created by the New York Times’ Nate Silver) with which one can look at the presidential election results and calculate what would have happened if the racial and ethnic mix of voters had been different. The tool also allows one to project future results based on any number of scenarios in which the country’s demographic profile and voting patterns change.
“In 2012, President Obama famously won 71 percent of the Hispanic vote to Mitt Romney’s 27 percent. If all other factors remained the same, how large a percentage of the Hispanic vote would Romney have had to win to capture the White House?”, York asks.
Looking at various scenarios, York concludes that even if Romney had won 60 percent of the Hispanic vote. he would have lost by the same margin, 283 electoral votes to 255. According to the Times’ calculator, Romney would have had to win 73 percent of the Hispanic vote to prevail in 2012. Which suggests that Romney, and Republicans, had bigger problems than Hispanic voters.
York concludes that “the most serious of those problems was that Romney was not able to connect with white voters who were so turned off by the campaign that they abandoned the GOP and in many cases stayed away from the polls altogether. Recent reports suggest as many as 5 million white voters simply stayed home on Election Day. If they had voted at the same rate they did in 2004, even with the demographic changes since then, Romney would have won. Likewise, the white vote is so large that an improvement of 4 points — going from 60 percent to 64 percent of those whites who did vote — would have won the race for Romney.”
These two articles challenge the basic motivation of the pro-amnesty Republicans to bring more Hispanic voters to the GOP. Kuhner shows that amnesty alone will not bring in more Hispanic voters but will, instead, more likely significantly increase the size of the Democratic Hispanic voting bloc in years to come. At the same time York theorizes that even if amnesty were a core issue among Hispanic voters, Republican support of the passage of so-called comprehensive immigration reform will not in itself convert sufficient Hispanic voters to elect a Republican President.
The Crusty Conservative feels that our current immigration system is broken and needs reform. However he also feels that if the Republicans in congress end up supporting any form of amnesty for illegal immigrants that they will be doing so at their own risk and will be…
Doing The Wrong Thing For The Wrong Reason.
The Crusty Conservative
“… individuals may injure a whole society, by not declaring their sentiments.
It is therefore not only their right, but their duty, to declare them.”
–John Dickinson, Letters of Fabius, 1788
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