Thu Jan 31, 2013, 04:52 PM
SpartanDem (4,500 posts)
Meet The Conservatives Trying To Stop Immigration Reform
Immigration reformers have the wind at their backs this week, buoyed by support not just from Republican senators, but an array of conservative interest groups who have signed on to their cause. But the reignited debate is also driving the opposition’s hardliners out into the open, offering the clearest picture yet of the fault lines Congress must overcome to pass a bill.
At least as troubling for national Republicans hoping to use immigration talks as a means to repair their political standing after 2012 is conservative media’s reactions. While some major TV personalities like Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly have voiced support for a comprehensive bill, other major outlets and commentators are preparing for war. And already the conversation is drifting to arguments that could further alienate Hispanic voters.
One emerging meme on the right, for example, is that Hispanics will never vote for Republicans because their community is inherently contemptuous of capitalism and family values. This was a key argument in the National Review’s editorial condemning the Senate’s immigration framework on Wednesday:
“f we are to take Hispanics at their word, conservative attitudes toward illegal immigration are a minor reason for their voting preferences. While many are in business for themselves, they express hostile attitudes toward free enterprise in polls. They are disproportionately low-income and disproportionately likely to receive some form of government support. More than half of Hispanic births are out of wedlock. Take away the Spanish surname and Latino voters look a great deal like many other Democratic constituencies.”
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Meet The Conservatives Trying To Stop Immigration Reform (Original post)
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Response to SpartanDem (Original post)
Thu Jan 31, 2013, 05:24 PM
pampango (21,391 posts)
2. From a more grassroots level: "Illegal Immigration Foes Despair Over GOP Moves"
But (Marty) Lich (a self-described conservative who used to consider herself to be a republican) and voters like her are watching with despair as more and more Republican politicians edge toward a bipartisan plan that includes a pathway to citizenship for many of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. “If the GOP agrees on this amnesty, they’re selling out their core values,” Lich said. “They’d lose us. They’d lose the votes of people who support them, and they’re not going to gain a lot of votes.”
Demographics and election returns are pushing Republican leaders away from people like Lich. In 2007, a grass-roots rebellion led Republicans to reject then-President George W. Bush’s immigration overhaul because it included a process in which otherwise law-abiding illegal immigrants could eventually become U.S. citizens. Activists derided the provision as an “amnesty.” After tea party groups toppled various Republicans in primaries over their dovish immigration stands, the party’s rhetoric and proposals became increasingly tough.
That’s changed since the drubbing the GOP took last November. Mitt Romney received underwhelming support from voters in the two fastest-growing minority groups: 27 percent of Hispanic voters and an even smaller share from Asians, according to exit polls. In contrast, George W. Bush won an estimated 44 percent of the Hispanic vote in his 2004 re-election.
Immigration restriction activists — they don’t like being called “anti-immigrant” or “hard-liners” — lack the organizational heft of labor unions, business organizations and religious groups, their primary opponents in this debate. Nonetheless, for years they were able to block an immigration overhaul that included some kind of legalized status. But polls show public opinion may have turned against them. An AP-GfK poll last week found 62 percent of Americans — and 53 percent of Republicans — support a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants. That’s up 10 points and 22 points respectively from 2010.
It is hard to shed a tear for the despairing wingnuts in the republican base. The fight for immigration reform isn't over and the wingnuts may still succeed like they did 5 years ago, but for the time being their is much gnashing of teeth in wingnut land.