May 28, 2007


Changes to immigration bill possible: Republican senators on opposite sides say they are ready to negotiate (Molly Hennessy-Fiske, May 28, 2007, LA Times)

Leading Republican senators on both sides of the immigration debate said Sunday that they would work together to modify the bipartisan legislation being considered in the Senate.

Initially, some conservative Republicans condemned what has been dubbed the "grand bargain" on immigration that emerged this month. The legislation would increase border security and workplace enforcement of immigration laws, long favored by Republicans, in exchange for delivering on the Democrats' promise to offer legal status to an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants and to create guest worker programs.

The compromise, backed by President Bush, won support from conservative Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) but was criticized by another GOP conservative from a border state, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas.

Last week, Bush met with Hutchison and several other Republican opponents at the White House. On Sunday, Hutchison said she considered the legislation "better than the status quo."

If nothing else, the fact that they're the party of business, and that the economy requires more workers, will force enough Republicans into line to hand the President a historic win.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 28, 2007 8:24 AM

It'll be "historic" all right.

Posted by: Sandy P at May 28, 2007 9:54 AM

. . . Mexican history!

Posted by: obc at May 28, 2007 10:29 AM

That's what's the matter. The faction of business wants cheap labor, and is splitting itself off from the national coalition which had been the former Republican majority.

Some of us have seen for years that immigration is the coalition breaker.

The business faction is focused on the immediate bottom line, not at long-range cultural and political trends. To blame them for this would be like blaming water for flowing downhill.

This matter is much too complicated to be wished away by slandering opponents of open borders with "racism." Talk to people-real people. In my part of the country, Southeastern Pennsylvania, there is little evidence of racism, and much evidence of social and residential integration. Such racism as persists is the result of minority leadership trying to hold on to their nitches of power.

Yet ordinary citizens who deal amicably with neighbors of every hue and national origin are strongly in opposition to open borders. This has been a matter of general devotion to the rule of law, the feeling that the actor follows the rules and that others should be held to the same standard.

As time goes by and as we see the plutocracy line up with the haters of established things, the result has to be cynicism and alienation. Most simply, the people will not trust the economic and political leadership, and the coalition is shattered.

Posted by: Lou Gots at May 28, 2007 11:49 AM

Christians and business sufficve. Let the wahoos reform the Know-Nothings. We'll take the Latinos.

Posted by: oj at May 28, 2007 3:42 PM

The idea that latinos are going to vote GOP and therefore this is a good deal is ludicrous. The same people argue that african-americans and jewish can't possibly continue to vote 90% and yet they do. Lou is right - this splits the GOP while the Dem base doesn't care, hurting the GOP in '08 and beyond.

Posted by: AWW at May 28, 2007 9:20 PM

Jews are secular, so they're Democrats. Latinos aren't. But the GOP can certainly alienate them as badly as it did blacks.

Posted by: oj at May 28, 2007 11:59 PM