Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Politics of Immigration
Let me offer a longer reply to Fred Barnes' argument, linked below, that the wisest course now is for GOP to pass the president's so-called immigration compromise in order to present voters with a domestic accomplishment by the 109th Congress. The theory goes that the president's compromise offers enough of an appearance of enforcement - the National Guard, money for some kind of fencing, etc. - to mobilize conservative vote. Here's a different scenario, much more frightening and (in my opinion) much more plausible.
1) The president and Senate persist in pushing their amnesty/guestworker immigration plan.
2) The House rejects it. No bill passes before the session ends.
3) Democrats campaign against the allegedly corrupt, do-nothing Congress and win the House.
4) The president, the Republican Senate, and the new Democratic House reach agreement on a bill more or less along the lines proposed by the president.
5) The Republican base rebels - but most senior Republican leaders disregard the protests. Senator McCain continues to cruise to the 2008 Republican nomination.
6) Unable to get a hearing from their party, disaffected Republicans rally to a Perot-like protest candidates - splitting the GOP in 2008, and delivering the presidency as well as the House to the Democrats.
Isn't this outcome at least as plausible, if not more plausible, than the positive scenarios?
05/23 11:50 PM